Remnant House is a new home built around the ruins of a homestead lost to bushfire. The new building creates three sides of a square courtyard that carves out a domestic-scaled garden space from the property’s much larger rural landscape. The house is comprised of three connected pavilions – the main home, guest accommodation, and an entertaining area. At the centre of the courtyard, a contemporary steel staircase provides access to the basement ruins which have been left in their fire-scarred condition. This former architectural space is now a sunken garden at the heart of the house that offers an opportunity to reflect on the history of the site and the remnants left behind. Rotated slightly from the original building’s alignment, the new house is orientated directly north to align with a view of the property’s ornamental lake. The building details play with the mismatched alignment of the ruins and new house via a series of angled blade walls that create deep ‘picture-frame’ structures on the north facade. Window seats and wide glazed areas in the new building connect the interior to intimate views of the courtyard and the wider landscape. The house is constructed from limestone, concrete, steel, and naturally fire-resistant blackbutt.
Houses Magazine Australian House of the Year, Finalist