Marshall House, Phillip Island Home, Victoria Property, Architecture, Building, Architect, Australia
Phillip Island House, Victoria
Residence in Australia – design by Denton Corker Marshall, Architects
22 + 25 Mar 2011
Phillip Island House – Book
An exercise in invisibility : New Natural Home book
Architects: Denton Corker Marshall
Photos: John Gollings
A ‘barely there’ house by architects Denton Corker Marshall features in a book on thoughtfully designed sustainable houses, selected from around the world.
Completed in 1992, the house on Victoria’s Phillip Island is one in a series of formal experiments by the practice to produce simple clear statements devoid of conventional domestic connotations. It remains an exceptional example of residential architecture in Australia.
Disappearing into sand dunes, the house is as much a part of the landscape as is possible. Visible from the beach as a low black line – the colour of the rocks – with ragged tufts of scrub grass above, from the landward side the house is completely hidden.
Sandwiched between two long walls that form one edge of a square courtyard sunk into the dune, the house is a long simple rectangle. Director Barrie Marshall describes the single-storey, low lying building as “quiet and elemental”.
New Natural Home by UK architecture writer Dominic Bradbury is a guide to designing, building and furnishing houses to minimise their impact on the earth. As well as the Phillip Island house, the book profiles five other Australian projects including one by Glenn Murcutt.
New Natural Home is published by Thames & Hudson and will be available in Australia in late April.
The Phillip Island House (also known as the Marshall House) is one of six projects by Denton Corker Marshall selected for a forthcoming book on the practice’s residential work, to be published by Birkhäuser.
Marshall House – Project Description
Phillip Island House, Victoria, Australia
A weekend holiday house overlooking a small bay on the coast two hours east of Melbourne Buried into the dunes, the house is visible from the beach as a low black line – the colour of the rocks – with ragged tufts of dune grass above it. It is completely hidden from the landward side. The objective was to maintain a low profile and to have an internal focus to the house, avoiding engagement with the surrounding context.
The house is a long thin concrete box, black inside and outside, set along one edge of a large square courtyard contained by three metre high black concrete walls with dune berms ramped up to roof level on three sides. On the open ocean elevation, windows are sized and positioned within each room to act as picture frames to the views, and the proportions and locations of the windows are determined by these internal considerations. The courtyard offers protection from winds and is a north facing sun trap in winter. The house in no-way connotes residence or domesticity. In its context it lurks like a Stealth bomber, hidden and subversive.
Architect: Denton Corker Marshall
Book featuring Phillip Island House
New Natural Home
Author: Dominic Bradbury
Photography: Richard Powers
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Published: February 2011
Location: Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia
New South Wales Buildings – Selection
Whale Beach House
Whale Beach House
Kangaroo Valley House, New South Wales
Stanwell Park House, south of Sydney
New South Wales House
Wave Rider House – Bondi Beach, Sydney
Bondi Beach House
Architecture in Australia
Australian Architects : Studio Listings
Comments / photos for the Phillip Island House page welcome