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House in a Garden
London, UK, 2012—2018

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Replacing a 1960's bungalow, a new pavilion and two underground stories provide a new house on a hidden, garden site. Externally the most visible component of the house is its pavilion like copper-clad roof. Inside, the roof comprises of a complex glulam timber structure made from spruce, its double curvature concluding in a glazed oculus. The roof has a floating quality set above a glass walled living room that enhances a sense of lightness while connecting the interior of the house to the surrounding landscaped garden as well as to its urban context.

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There are two levels below the ground floor. Bedrooms are immediately below ground, while there is a generous living/ gallery area with a 10 metre long swimming pool on a level further below. Light wells and skylights are designed to optimise daylight casting top light onto the walls of lower ground floors. Introducing daylight to a depth of up to eight metres was a challenge especially as the site of the house is tight and north facing. Digital analysis tools were used to seek out the three dimensional possibilities that light gives in terms of generating the form and organisation of the building.

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House in a Garden_Glulam roof installation
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02-Ground
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04-Ceiling
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‘Botsford is a rare architect that has no stylistic preconceptions: each of his projects (including the Lubetkin Prize winning Casa Ki-Ké in Costa Rica and Layered Gallery in London) show the same focussed application of an idea but look completely different from one another. He demonstrates how an extraordinary body of work can be developed from the most straightforward of building typologies. Whatever Botsford does next, we know it won’t be like anything he has done before.’

Piers Taylor, Architecture Today, January 2019.

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House in a Garden_Oculus skylight installation

Sunlight

Piers Taylor is in conversation with Gianni Botsford, discussing his 25 year analytical journey of creating architecture shaped by the movement of the sun.

A film by Jim Stephenson of Stephenson / Bishop.

Awards

  • Winner, RIBA Award, 2019
  • Longlisted, RIBA House of the Year, 2019
  • Commendation, AIA UK Excellence in Design Award, 2019
  • Shortlist, AR House Award, 2019
  • Winner, ArchDaily Building of The Year Award, 2019
  • Winner, AZ Awards Best Single Family Houses, 2019
  • Shortlist, Professional Lighting Design Recognition Award, 2019
  • Shortlist, Structural Timber Awards, 2019
  • Winner, Wood Award, 2019
  • Commendation, Archdaily Best Houses, 2018
  • Commendation, Dezeen Top 10 British Architecture Projects, 2018
  • Commendation, BBC Culture Best Buildings, 2018

Design Team

  • Gianni Botsford
  • Anahi Copponex
  • Kate Darby
  • James Eagle
  • Arslan Arkallayev

Consultants

  • New Wave London, Contractor
  • Zueblin, Glue-Laminated Timber Roof Fabricator
  • Todd Longstaffe-Gowan Landscape Architects, Landscape Architect
  • Isometrix, Lighting Designer
  • Pearce and Associates, Mechanical and Electrical Engineer
  • Edmund Sumner, Photography
  • Built Engineers, Structural Engineers
  • Tree Projects, Tree Specialist

Project Bibilography