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Local homes shortlisted for design award

Two homes in Hackney have been shortlisted for the prestigious RIBA London Awards 2018. They include a house in Upper Clapton with an indoor climbing wall and a home in Stoke Newington built from a stack of irregular cylinders.

Photo Credit: Helene Binet

They’re among just 10 family homes in London to reach the shortlist in the annual architectural awards.

Bought by local architects, Scenario House in Clapton is a fun renovation of a Victorian house, which has been extended and adapted to suit family life. They’ve created a split-level open-plan double reception, which incorporates the basement, a quirky angled roof light and a floating library leading upstairs.

Every inch of available space has been utilised, with space under the stairs featuring a pull-out table and bench. The children’s bedroom includes a ‘secret space’ entered via a climbing wall and exited using a fireman’s pole.

The property in Stoke Newington vying for the award is called Vex. It’s the result of a collaboration between the architects Steve Chance and Wendy de Silva and musician/composer Scanner and was inspired by an piano composition, a looping, repetitive work by Erik Satie called’ Vexations’ which takes 18 hours to perform.

Steve and Wendy told The Guardian newspaper: “We behave more like an artist,” they say. “You just paint what you want and hope someone wants to buy it.”

The three-storey house is made from poured concrete cast in-situ against corrugated steel sheeting. There’s also a glazed roof pavilion, with access to a roof terrace.

Adrian Forty wrote of the house in Architecture Today: “Vex is three eccentric corrugated concrete drums, misaligned vertically; the drums repeat, but they vary – they are like each other, but not alike. Together, they suggest remains of some colossal, never completed, antique monument, since hollowed out to make a habitation.

“The partially submerged ground-level drum is the workspace. The second drum contains two bedrooms and bathroom; and the top, ‘piano nobile’ drum is the kitchen and living room, with an enclosed roof terrace, screened with strips of larch, above. The staircase loops around the back of the drums, so that you never know what is coming next, and because the entry point to each level is in a different position, every level is unlike the previous one.”

The winning building will be announced on May 15th and will be entered for the national RIBA Stirling Prize, which celebrates the best new building of the year.

 

    Posted 13th April 2018

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