In this edition:
- Festive Glamour: When the festive season throws you an occasion, you need to glam it up.
- Andrew McUtchen looks for fun in cricket with former Australian cricketer Damien Fleming.
- Take a look at our Christmas Gift Guide.
One such house, Rostill, is the brainchild of BG Architecture. Its set on a wedge-shaped block at the end of a court, with the narrow end facing the street, giving the owners their much-desired privacy.
The concrete façade doesnt give you any indication of whats going on inside the house. But once you step in, it opens up to reveal a multitude of textures concrete and marble slabs, warm wood and clean finishes.
Were incredibly proud of it, says BG Architecture director Donna Brzezinski. The clients wanted a house that was warm, that had their own personality, that would house their quirky collection of art. The concrete acts as a thermal mass, as a structural wall, and its also acting as a finish.
Fellow director Adam Grundmann agrees: There are very few clients willing to go down that path, to completely trust you and trust your instincts, and theyre benefiting from it on so many levels.
That trust is an essential part of what makes BG Architecture tick. Brzezinski says there is an emphasis on communication and being hands-on, which is vital given that a prospective client will see a lot of the company.
All the architects in here are multitaskers. They all get involved in everything from design to documentation, town planning, liaising with clients and contract administration and site work. We quite strongly believe that youre not an architect until you can do all of those things properly.
This flexibility also extends to the companys take on jobs, which go from multimillion-dollar apartment developments to $100,000 shop fit-outs in Melbourne Central.
A lot of companies would say they werent interested in very low-budget projects. But its a wonderful project, one well design and build very quickly. Its quite fun and exciting to work within creative constraints, says Grundmann.
Brzezinski and Grundmann studied at the same time and moved in the same architectural circles before forming the company in 2002. Theres also an associate, Greg Buhagiar, whom Brzezinski describes as key to its success.
Theres a lot going on at the company theyre working on a bar and restaurant in the city, as well as a seven-storey apartment building that will rise behind the heritage-listed façade of a bank on Bridge Road.
Nevertheless, the clients who own the property are passionate about it, and Brzezinski says it has the potential to get moving. But its a feasibility study for a family hub in Robinvale that elicits an excited response from her.
That was a project for which we were invited to do some very early conceptual work. Thats my one true love in architecture working on community projects and working with people who cant afford architects or know what an architect does, Brzezinski says.
Greg has worked on community projects in Uganda, which he wants to continue to do, and its something that we want to develop in the practice in the future.