Here are the 4 Takeaways:

  • Use the Sun, Natural Light + Frame the Views

  • Employ Warm, Open and Flexible Floor Plans

  • Touch the Land Lightly

  • Express the Structure in Simple, Elegant Ways

“Life is not about maximizing everything, it’s about giving something back – like light, space, form, serenity, joy.”

Glenn Murcutt, Australian Architect

Who can argue with that? Australia and New Zealand, much like we have here in the West, specifically Marin, have landscapes and weather that we can readily work with, particularly on properties close to the coast.  On my travels there, I’ve been inspired by architects’ designs that frame the landscape, blur the line between outside and inside and feature the setting rather than the building itself.

Glenn Murcutt is the James Brown of soulful architecture down under.  He is the Godfather.  His work is simple, has a serene relationship to the land, is relatively economical and met the challenge that Van Gogh identified, “How to difficult it is to be simple”.  Catherine Hunter, a documentary film maker had this to say about him: “Long before we started talking about things such as sustainability, Glenn was practicing those things.”  His ethic serves is an inspiration to us and many others.  If Glenn Murcutt were an author his name would be Wallace Stegner.

Glenn Murcutt, Australia

Glenn Murcutt, Australia

Glenn Murcutt, Australia

The rest of these are some examples from other architects that caught our eye and captured our heart.   While we wish we could inhabit one of these gems, the primary takeaway is that these principles apply regardless of the size or scope of your project.  Remember:

  • Use the Sun, Natural Light + Frame the Views

  • Employ Warm, Open and Flexible Floor Plans

  • Touch the Land Lightly

  • Express the Structure in Simple, Elegant Ways

Herriot + Melhuish Architecture, New Zealand

  This actually is from Wyoming but it could fly down under!

Herbst Architects, New Zealand

Herbst Architects, New Zealand

Herbst Architects, New Zealand