29 April 2011

Embodiment of Light

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Today we did a small experiment on the lighting effects for Uchi Lounge.

We made a 1:1 sectional model of the lightbox we are designing, organised large scale sample from fabric supplier, borrowed light source from electrician (don't we love our team!), and tested the effect of light if the light source is at different distance and direction from the fabric.

The difference is subtle at this scale but will be magnified once built.... can you tell the difference?

light source at the furtherest point in the lightbox from the fabric

light source at half the distance in the lightbox from the fabric

We did similar experiments for the Water Moon lightbox; but it was to test out the clarity of shadow projection from within the lightbox.
We had to go for the compact fluorescent rather than the linear fluorescent as the result (the linear fluorescent produces very diffused light and was not projecting much of any recognisable shadows...).
There was also a rather sensitive relationship with the interrelated distance between light source, bottle, and fabric......well, we had a lot of fun and are happy with the result!

Initial concept stage, when testing with paper lampshade material

During construction, testing with actual fabric sample on site

Freshly installed...the day before Water Moon opened for business

Professionally photographed (c) Katherine Lu

Water Moon has been widely recognised:
> Restaurant & Bar Design Awards UK - International Lighting Design Category - Shortlisted (refer HERE)
> Intergrain Timber Vision Awards 2010 - Commercial Interior Category - Winner (refer HERE)
> IDEA Awards 2010 - Best Hospitality Design - Shortlisted (refer HERE)

28 April 2011

Nostalgia nostalgia

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It is always a challenge, to work on something that is already very nice in a non-descriptive way... Here we have one.

We were approached by Uchi Lounge in Sydney to work on the interior renovation, so we went for dinner to observe how things are.
It is tucked away in the lane way for people who are looking for somewhere to temporarily hide out from the noise of the world.  The inside space is architecturally unadorned, but the atmosphere is organic and relaxing, somewhere really comfortable and safe, with a sense of nostalgia...I guess that is why it is where local celebrities chose to hang out.
The owner of Uchi Lounge is an artist who produced most of the artworks in the space.  Oh and have I mentioned the food? ...man... so good....

Now we are faced with the challenge to create something sensitive and just as "comfortable".....Well, guess we will know soon enough as we are going into construction next week!

Here are some photos of the existing condition..

the street facade
entry stairwell
the unusually large, long bar
looking back out to the street

Let there be light

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Today the triangular glass infill is installed ...finally.....
M house is suddenly filled with such gentle glow, and the roof structure sits silently in its fine repetition.

2011 April 28 - approaching completion

2010 November 11 - study model

2011 March 22 - sealed triangular infill with plywood during construction

18 April 2011

2 More Weeks to go...

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We have had a crazy April so far.... M House is approaching the completion in 2 weeks time, Yoshi is actually flying off in 2 days to Japan for project completion.

So here is the round up of site progress for the past 2 weeks....

external rendering started from the Northern facade

Look at the beautiful texture and subtle colour variation of the Shirazu rendering.. the colour pigment is already in the render mix, so this will be final finish

Relocating the electricity pole outside the house to somewhere closer to the boundary with neighbour (it was closer to the house).  We were concerned if neighbours were going to complain, but luckily they agreed in the end

Internal wall lining in plasterboard

......and internal wall undercoat painted (in the bedrooms)

View from main entry door.  We designed a small enclosure for "genkan" (the entry) where people can take their shoes off.  This space also provides thermal buffer between inside and outside, as it tends to become quite cold and windy in winter.  The genkan space is relatively small with a lower ceiling height, this is intentional to give a contrasting experience to the volume of the house.

Genkan box is to the right of this photo (the side wall will be installed later for ease of access during construction), it also becomes the back of kitchen joinery. Bookshelf to the left is now complete.  To the floor on the right, holes along the wall can be seen; these are for underfloor heating and will be eventually covered up in fine timber slats.

Staircase between the genkan box and bookshelf, to go up from the main floor to the study space half a storey higher.

Scaffolding off!!!!!
The entry is 1.2m off the ground so they rely on the little temporary stair to access the inside.  This makes the scale of the building difficult to perceive at the moment, the full height glass doors look like windows, and the timber garage door towards the foreground looks like a trap door......

4 April 2011

The underground chamber

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A while ago I put out this quiz on the concrete block enclosure under the finished floor level (see HERE....and the answer HERE)..well, here it is, finishing up.

tipping sand into the enclosure under bathroom floor

the plywood floor structure "lid"
concrete over

the same is being done at the entry "genkan"...packing the sand in

....adding reinforcement steel...and concrete...