Inspired by a desire to bring awareness to the relationship between shelter and landscape, Nulla Vale House has a fundamental objective – to facilitate an immediate connection to place and context. Edition Office has reimagined what was to be coastal home into a rural oasis that is both raw and rustic while remaining soft, warm and innately peaceful.
The one-bedroom house was originally designed to sit within the dunes of Rye’s back beach yet soon became a lost project as it never found its ideal inhabitants. Instead, MOGAMMA approached Edition Office to translate the original idea by visualising it in a new setting – the rugged, granite and dry grass landscape of the Macedon Ranges. The rural locale occupies a deep sense of stillness from its granite geology, which also evokes the soft rhythms of breaking waves in Rye. This quietude is chanelled into the design’s realisation of an unmediated connection between the home, the ground and the land.
The rural locale occupies a deep sense of stillness from its granite geology and the soft rhythms of the coastal breaking waves, which also evokes the soft rhythms of breaking waves in Rye.
MOGAMMA imbues the Nulla Vale home with a robust materiality and distinct ruggedness in their striking visualisation. A cast concrete roof with a steeped internal ceiling allows shadows and a play of light to reflect the changing weather. This elemental concrete roof form is to sit upon a series of rammed earth beams, stacked one upon the other to form a thick textured wall. The floor visualises mechanically compacted earth that sits over the structural slab and offers a stark and beautiful continuation of the dusty floor of the surrounding plains and the earthen walls of the house.
Divided into primary and secondary spaces, the presented floor plan also creates a solid foundation for an indoor-to-outdoor connection. The secondary spaces are designed to be held within parallel pairs of stacked rammed earth walls to offer more intimate quarters, including the staircase, kitchen store, study and robe. Primary spaces occupy the area between the paired walls and include the kitchen, bedroom, living and bathroom.
The visualisation imbues an immediate connection to the land the way the outdoors become intertwined with the home. Each indoor space has timber-framed sliding doors so that they become fully open to the outdoor elements, with only the elemental shelter of the canopy overhead. There is also a geometric concrete pool structure resembling an earthen hollow that positions a set of stairs to face directly into the warmth of the northern sun and offers views out towards the expansive horizon.
The interior styling keeps with the raw, rugged nature of the home. The imperfection of the rammed earth material used throughout is complemented by timber and aged bronze fixtures. Furnishings and objects are minimalist and neutral, the majority modelled from scratch to give the home and fresh and tailored feel.
Edition Office and MOGAMMA eloquently explore the power of an elegant plan, the play of shadow and light, and the power of an outdoor presence within the interior of a home. Offering a unique, refined semblance of camping, Nulla Vale House proposes a new way of designing homes– one that sees the home as a refuge without disregarding the natural repose that comes from living alongside the elements.