This year’s Victorian Architecture Awards Open Day shares two residences of distinction from the 2023 Houses (Alterations and Additions) category. Helvetia and Sunday both exemplify how sustainable design can be integrated to repair existing Fitzroy typologies – a worker’s cottage and a grand double storey terrace. Both designs value practicality over ornament, which are tailored to the personal lifestyle of the residents. Materials are selected to denote, connect and resonate with the spaces to blur indoor/outdoor spaces. Greenspaces are prioritised throughout the built forms to create passive surveillance between the interior and exterior.
Open Day Sunday will explore a ‘spectrum of comforts’ between the conditions of different living spaces. Architecture architecture utilises robust materials and clean geometries to reimagine a typical workers’ cottage plan on a Fitzroy backstreet to prioritise the quality of living and scale of comfort on a 175m2 site. Given the spatial conditions, spaces are interconnected and separated to negotiate between the external/internal, public/private and generous/intimate.
Sunday embraces natural lighting, openness to landscape and simple materials to remain unique to the client’s living requirements. Along the north and south axis, spaces transition from public to private. These zones are separated into two typologies with different roof planes – lofty and generous or low and intimate. Referencing Boyd’s Walsh Street residence, the roof plane remains a constant gesture connecting the bedroom to dining and kitchen space, prompting the central courtyard designed by Amanda Oliver to become an ‘outdoor room’. This expansive public area is juxtaposed with the intimate adjacent lounge, which is reminiscent of David McGlashan’s conversation pit at Heide II. Breezeblock walls filter in natural light and scenery and are used to demarcate the different zones. Inspired by Luis Barragan, a splash of sunshine yellow denotes the sunken bath and lounge and gently draws intrigue to these private spaces.
2023 Victorian Architecture Awards, The John and Phyllis Murphy Award for Residential Architecture – Houses (Alterations and Additions)
2023 National Architecture Awards, Shortlisted
Led by Micheal Roper and Nick James, Architecture architecture prioritises sensitive contemporary designs that harmonise with their social, historical and environmental contexts. The studio is known for creating robust and healthy built environments – sunlight, fresh air and sustainable materials are key to every project.
Amanda Oliver Gardens
Amanda Oliver Gardens is a landscape and garden making company that offers collaborative design expertise alongside an extensive plant and horticultural knowledge. Their approach to each garden is unique to the site with an intuitive sense of aesthetics that complement the surroundings.
Tickets per session:
General Admission $50
RBF Friends/Boyd Circle/Students $40
Tickets are strictly limited. Click on a session time below to book.
Please note access to Open Day Helvetia requires a separate ticket. It takes 15 minutes to walk from Sunday to Helvetia. If you would like to visit both residences please do not purchase back to back sessions to allow time to transfer between sites.
Attendees must be 16 years or over.
9.45 am: Registration
10.45 am: Registration
11.45 am: Registration
1.45 pm: Registration
2.45 pm: Registration
3.45 pm: Registration
Our Open Days underpin our mission to further the legacy of Robin Boyd by offering access for the public to explore and understand architectural projects of outstanding merit. Since 1929, the Victorian Architecture Awards have enabled peer recognition of best practice in the field and inspired others to continue striving to positively shape communities through architecture.
Open Day Sunday is generously supported by Brickworks Building Products.
Sunday. Photographer: Tom Ross