18.12.2020

As the year nears its end, construction at Urban Barn reaches its conclusion. Composed of three parts, the house is simultaneously singular and hybrid; a brick terrace sitting in the interstice between a workshop and garage either side, occupies a lowered floor level nestled within the quiet street of Victorian terraces.

Articulating the vestiges of old, the culmination of new, and the points at which they meet, intersections between the three buildings are revealed as brick datums in doorway surrounds and peeled back walls in recognition of the separate fragments of the house. The memory of a World War II bomb is densely stitched into the fabric of the site, its evidence left in marks upon the bricks.

Throughout, the building reveals itself as a series of intruiging moments. The interior brings together a collection of archetypal domestic spaces – the room, the landing, courtyard, porch, bay, nook, long gallery, garret, cloister, perron stair, privy, library, chapel, barn, light house, gallery, workshop, attic, all threaded across three buildings. Each one is linked to a memory of the archetype of these spaces, exploring a vastness in lightness and darkness. Crowning halos of light cast down from corner skylights. An attic is daylit along its sidelength from an elongated gallery window. A dark glossed plywood study stares reflectively back at the end of the hall, and continues as a staircase, stooping down into the workshop from above.