To rise above the rest, an architect must have a clear signature in their work. This is true of McBride Charles Ryan, who have developed a collection of homes that are distinctive, that share a central trait that is unique to this Australian architecture firm alone. The Klein Bottle House, the Dome House– these structures all share a sense of subtraction from the standard, where a shape is sliced and dissected to yield a stunning new form.
The Letterbox House, located near the beaches of Blairgowrie, Australia, is a continuation of the McBride Charles Ryan signature, a subtractive design where less become more than meets the eye. An outer, dark wooden shell is chopped away like an axe to a log, albeit lowered in resolution. A lighter, natural wood color gives character to the sliced section, which in this case becomes a deck for outdoor entertainment.
Within, an open living room is accented by a red rear wall with sliced windows that allow light to crawl across the floor in geometric patterns. A private section of the home is raised above ground level, with a master bedroom that opens onto a screened porch above. This is sculptural architecture in an absolute sense, a home that is a work of art for its inhabitants. Some may argue that there’s a separation here of form and function, but those may be missing the point. This home is as much about art as it is about shelter, where both take compromises to exist as one. [mcbride charles ryan via designboom]