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This is an ancillary building with two studio spaces and a covered deck between. It sits alongside the main house with a connecting deck and entry into the house. A concrete ramp runs up to the deck. The building sits on concrete foundation walls or 'fins' and cantilevers beyond them at each end. The cladding is Ecoply Shadowclad. Top hung face sliding timber doors are used to enter the studios and main house. The positioning of the building on the site allows sunlight into the main house through the translucent wall of the internal deck between the two studios.


This building was achieved on a low budget.


From the client’s brief, her artistic work and our discussions, the following conceptual framework emerged and is the basis of the design. The studio building reflects the clients’ bicultural approach to life referencing both Maori architecture and the European bungalow it sits next to. The design of this building has the long gable of the meeting house on one side and a shorter gable on the other giving it it’s own style and also making sure it does not fit into either camp.


Another aspect is that a Maori house (wharenui) is seen as a body in itself, a living being with ribs (the rafters, the studio’s exposed rafters) and a spine (a ridge pole, for the Studio, the walls of the internal deck).


A third aspect is whanaungatanga, a sense of kinship or family connection. This is reflected in the positioning of the little house facing towards the big house indicating an affectionate relationship between them, similar to the older sibling / younger sibling relationship. This idea is supported with the deck, concrete ramp, face sliding doors, and same floor levels providing a strong connection between them.

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