Shroud House


The addition and alterations to a worker’s cottage on a diminutive 250m² lot. The proposal reorientates the priority of the plan away from the Street and into the backyard by attaching a differentiated box which addresses the kinetic semi-private green street of vegetable gardens, clotheslines and self-constructed sheds.

Primarily the new architecture operates with an articulated volume with strict spatial disciplines, punctuated at the side and rear with an infusion of tempered light mediating life, art and the blended histories of its occupants. Domesticity experienced within the confines of a small lot is enhanced by a volumetric and visual play, juxtaposed against the imposing proximity, yet essential inclusiveness of the green arteries of adjoining allotments. Sacrificing maximum gross floor area 'grab' and prioritising the spatial experience were crucial to the integrity of the program.

The two principal concepts being the volumetric explosion of the interior, the second the engagment on three levels to the immediacy of the rear green street and beyond to its larger urban context through the thin veil or 'shroud' of the building envelope.

An extruded four metre kitchen bench occupies the floor of the void which is fulcrum to the life and activities within the house.

Binding and connecting the internal and external spaces the design uses patterning of a detail motif of a 'jabaan' or eel which interweaves interior wet area tile details, feature block wall and a display niche; then it is reintroduced to the exterior feature block walls and concrete forms in the landscape. The detail motif of the 'jabaan' is derived from the Indigenous heritage of one of the designer’s, whose mother is Dyirbal from the Gumbilbara people.


In association with Caroll Go-Sam.


State Commendation, RAIA Queensland Architecture Awards, 2006

Regional Commendation, Brisbane Region, RAIA Queensland Architecture Awards, 2006

Award of Merit, Queensland Design Awards, DIA Awards, 2005


Photography: Jon Linkins + Rix Ryan + Phorm