A South African House for Art

Mellet & Human Architects received Awards of Excellence and Merit from the South African Institute of Architects for the design of this house situated in the established suburb of Groenkloof, Pretoria. The clients wanted to move from their existing bigger house, into a new more compact house on a subdivided portion of the property. The brief was challenging - a very steep site, existing trees had to be kept, views from the existing house at the back had to be retained, and the smaller house had to accommodate a very extensive collection of South African art and sculptures.

The property was terraced in order to provide living areas on one level, with garages below. The design resulted in a house that is like a high level penthouse absorbing the unobstructed views of Pretoria, positioned between the dense foliage. The linear floor plan provides all living areas and bedrooms north of a gallery. The gallery double as exhibition space for art, as well as a link between the living areas and bedrooms. Clerestory windows ensure the house is extensively flooded with natural light. In the garden sculptures are incorporated and acts as focal points anchoring the view. Through the use of glass, natural finishes internally and externally, this building essentially is part of the hill it is situated against.