The architects have been involved with previous projects on this tree-rich property, and were commissioned to design a small contemporary house to compliment the existing collection of buildings - spatially organised around a modern interpretation of the Cape Werf.
Inspired by the trees on the estate, the client requested a cabin-like, one bedroomed hide-away resembling a tree house. The structure is located in a small clearing amongst forest-like gardens, and respond similarly to the verticality of the surrounding trees in order to maximise views from the highest portion of the site.
Inspiration was drawn from the timber cabins of Horace Gifford and Kengo Kuma’s notions of working with the void or in-between space, while Louis Kahn’s mastery of pure form and the detailing ethic of Carlo Scarpa informed a process of geometric restraint and handcrafted manufacturing.
靈感來自Horace Gifford的木屋和Kengo Kuma關於在空間或中間空間工作的觀念，而Louis Kahn對純淨形式的掌握和Carlo Scarpa的細心道德則啟發了幾何約束和手工製造過程。
The organisational diagramme of the structure explores the pure geometry of a square, with each side divided into three modules and where two of these modules determine the diameter of a circle on each of the four sides of the square - resulting in a pin-wheel plan layout.
A square is directional and a circle not - the square relates to the North/South site geometry and the four circles to the organic and natural surroundings. Each circle’s centre is the location for a column, and circular rings, supporting the floor beams above, are connected to the columns by means of branch-like arms. Each ring circumscribes a half-round space ancillary to the main square living space on that level.
The building becomes a vertically arranged “clearing in the forest”, with living space on level one, a bedroom on level two and a roof deck on the third. A plant room is located at ground level below the building. The half round bays accommodate a patio, dining alcove and stair on the living level, a bathroom on the bedroom level and a built-in seat on the roof deck level - the pure geometries provide articulation to the spaces. The building lightly touches the ground, and entry is by means of a suspended timber and Corten steel ramp.
The columns, arms and rings are constructed from laser-cut and folded Corten steel plate, and each column is divided into four ‘trunks’ in the interest of transparency, slenderness and to allow floor beams and windows to pass through the centre points of the rings. The steel trees support timber floors beams, facade glazing and a western red cedar building envelope. The connections between steel and timber are expressed by means of hand-turned brass components. All materials are left untreated, and will express the passing of time as they weather naturally with the surrounding trees.
Project Name: House Paarman Tree Hous
Location: Constantia, CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA
Architect Office: Malan Vorster Architecture Interior Design
Photographer: Adam Letch, Micky Hoyle
Malan Vorster Architecture Interior Design (Pty) Ltd is an architecture practice with a strong focus on design that provides an integrated professional service encompassing
master planning, architecture, interior architecture, construction supervision and interior design. The practice aspires to create works of architecture through inspiration, insight
and integrity. Inspiration to rise above the act of mere building to find architectural and spatial design solutions that will contribute to our profession's dialectical development. Insight into the design challenges at hand - whether conceptual, functional, budgetary or aesthetic. Integrity to conduct business with the best interests of our clients, society and the environment in mind.
The firm was founded in 2013 by Pieter Malan, Jan-Heyn Vorster and Peter Urry.
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