- Givlio Aristide
Sitting right in the middle of a busy street, with almost no vegetation in sight, is Cloister House; a project designed by studio MORQ. The dwelling acts an antidote to what surrounds it, as a place for retreat and a chance to cultivate a rich and beautiful garden. The architects built upon a brutalist aesthetic mixed with a Japanese influence, making for a undeniable project to behold.
The residence, located in the Western region of Australia in the city of Perth, is often impacted by extreme conditions such as constant wind and heat. As a response, a powerfully built outer shell, made from pure concrete was chosen. Its dark grey tone was adopted throughout, both outside as well as inside. A truly welcome cohesion was instilled, avoiding any visual disruptions.
The interior of the home is based on two areas—both with an unmistakable identity. The first is based around the courtyard, clad with vast windows and the aforementioned garden. It is the perfect juxtaposition of an urban sensibility and bucolic one, as the vegetation flirts with the idea of invading the residence. The second area aims to host the owners’s adult children and visitors, located in the second half of the residence.
The sole material that dares to act as a supporting character is a gorgeous brown timber. Present in the window frames, bathroom floors, and on the ceiling as a geometric and insistent pattern. It manages to—alongside the garden—bring some warmth and additional texture.
Cloister House is a clear example of concrete as the perfect material to bring forth a sense of austerity, but on the other hand, it can also be the perfect vessel for a place of retreat and amiability.