House 5 - Kurgan Lewis, Seven Houses, Parkview, Johannesburg, SA

2008

This is the fifth house on entering the cluster. Like the other houses the main house is entered form the south side of the common street and opens to the north common garden and the out building is across the road.

The brief called for a family home for two parents and two teenage children. An important aspect of the brief was the artist mother’s studio and the parents desire to have their bedroom on the ground floor. Together with the schemes common spatial principal of internal courtyards, these two programming intentions set up the spatial configurations of the house.  The location of the main bedroom suite on the ground floor liberated first floor area and allowed for a large double volume living and dining space linked to the open plan kitchen to the south and a semi private courtyard to the north.  This space is the core of the house with all other spaces interacting with it either physically or visually. The first floor is primarily children’s area with two bedrooms, a playroom and a bathroom all linked via a passage way and open to the double volume space on one side and the private courtyard to the other.  There is access to a roof terrace via a staircase from the first floor, The father’s study is also upstairs situated above the kitchen and overlooks the double volume lining space to the north and the mother’s studio across the street to the south.  The parents ground floor bedroom suite opens both onto the private courtyard through the bathroom and onto the semi -private courtyard through the main bedroom.

The outbuilding accommodates a guest room with bathroom and studio admin area on the ground floor and the studio on the first floor. The studio has a steel and glass façade wall to the north shaded by planting. While at work, often at unusual hours, the mother artist is in her space but is connected to her family visually through the south, predominantly glazed façade of the house.

Architectural Team