Benn + Penna Architecture / Balmain House
Jury Citation (Institute of Architects)
“Envisaged as an ‘inter-generational house’, this project is an innovative response to a sensitive brief. The major achievement here has been the architect’s ability to create a surprising generosity of space and volume within a relatively compact form. A new wedge-shaped rear volume spans both cottages and reads as a sensitively considered extension to the existing roof. This modulated volume captures a northerly aspect and city skyline vistas as well as providing much needed upper level bedrooms & study spaces. Internally, double height volumes over the ground floor living and dining areas create an active and purposeful dialogue between levels. The illusion of a much larger space is further accentuated by the connection to contemplative landscaped outdoor spaces. Materials are quite and refined: spaces are generous and thought-provoking. The result is a highly sophisticated and detailed project carefully crafted for its local context. It is an inspiring example of ‘less is more’, of hidden delight as well as a poignant reminder of the surprising beauty of modest spaces.”
Photography by Katherine Lu and Tom Ferguson.