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Kaipara Harbour, New Zealand – Crosson, Clarke, Carnachan Architects

Year: 2007
Photography: Patrick Reynolds
Sitting a short distance from Auckland, facing west onto Bass Straight, the entrance to Kaipara Harbour, New Zealand has an unenviable record as the graveyard of ships and people. Many of these shipwrecks remain visible. This home overlooks the harbour entrance and pays tribute to both nature and the records of that maritime history.
Built of Corten steel, native timbers and rammed earth, the home acknowledges the harsh yet beautiful environment that is Bass Straight.
Shipwrecked - a homage to maritime history
hipwrecked – a homage to maritime history

As a response, the house is conceptually a number of upturned hulls submerged in the sand – ‘rusting’ hulks which continue to weather in this harsh coastal environment. This idea is explored within the plan with irregular shapes and spaces – one can imagine these having been shifted and morphed by time and tides.

The experience of the landscape is manipulated by various relationships to the outside – withdrawn, immediate and projected. The cladding of weathered copper reinforces the notion of the temporal and the developing of a patina over time.

The structure of timber portal frame reminiscent of the early structure of galleons, colliers and trading ships of an earlier time, handmade and solid. The house is an exploration of the notion of ‘form finding’ as opposed to form making: the idea that an appropriate architecture emerges out of its context.

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Another home be the same architect is Coromandel Container