Courtyard House by FIGR Architecture & Design
The Courtyard House by FIGR Architecture & Design is a modern home placed on a site with a gently sloping incline but clear of structures and vegetation. The two-story timber house, that previously occupied the site in lower Templestowe in Victoria, Australia, had been demolished, the only thing left from it was a pool.
The family who hired the architects of FIGR, wanted to downsize after they had already built two family homes previously. This gave life to the idea for a centrally located courtyard. The idea evolved as a solution that offers a sheltered outdoor space as well as natural light and visual amenity for the internal areas.
The Courtyard House is a nod to the tradition of the Italian Palazzo and Australian courtyard house, creating the constant connection between outdoor and indoor spaces. The house is divided by three landscaped zones: the front yard, the courtyard and the rear yard. The landscaped courtyard is the heart of the house, masking the neighbouring dwellings while at the same time revealing canopies of the surrounding trees.
This tranquil, calm space has an intimate connection with the interior spaces of the house which reveal themselves from various angles. Further negotiation of the landscape and nature is achieved through the material palette. The internal timber batten ceiling not only guides and navigates visitors through the spaces, but also creates a dramatic juxtaposition to the white concrete flooring. Elongated brown bricks were used respectfully integrate the exterior fabric of the surrounding context of Templestowe and a further play on the horizontal nature of the built form proportions.