This is a renovation of an existing house, designed to house an extensive collection of art and artifacts. Situated on the South bank of the Fraser River, the original house was architect-designed in 1980, but using the building and stylistic pattern of the Vancouver Special. The original house was designed in a vague Spanish/Mediteranean style and features numerous arches and curved elements including a dramatic circular staircase. At the outset, we had to make the decision as to whether to try and "modernise" the lines of the house, with straight lines and sober materials, or to work with the romantic geometries already invested into the narrative structure of the building.
We decided to go with the story but to push it as far as possible towards its own perilous conclusion. new arches were formed, new holes were cut, materials were chosen not on the basis of being new or fashionable but rather, by virtue of their being in keeping with (our paranoiac enhanced version of) the existing culture of the design. We felt that pushed to it's logical end, the house would resemble the consulate of a small, unimportant country with a corrupt government.