Homes are an enduring statement of individuality and affability conveyed in the highest form of built expression. Elsternwick House is an exemplar of this with its quirky interplay of old and new. This whimsical renovation project and live-in art gallery is a curated space, displaying the personalities of its inhabitants through the artworks found adorning the homes many walls.
WORDS Nicole Johnson | PHOTOGRAPHY Shannon McGrath
The project, a collaboration between Matt Gibson Architecture + Design and Mim Design, was a poorly sited period home with a south facing 1980’s extension. Landscape design firm, Ben Scott Garden Design also worked alongside the creative team to ensure the cohesive design thread extended out to the garden.
Hinting that modernism lies beyond, the salon set in the existing portion of the home, reflects old Edwardian entrance rooms.
Purpose designed to exhibit the family’s love of art and sculpture, the creative design team have achieved an inspiring cohesiveness, telling the transitional story of the buildings past form to its new.
Jutting from its humble exterior a zinc extension forms the new garage and guest bedroom, complimented by sleek modern landscaping.
A series of minimalistic living spaces are entered through metal lined openings, paying respect to the homes original footprint. Suspended above is an “origami” ceiling resembling crumbled paper. The ceiling connects contemporary black paneling to existing red brick, blurring the lines between the buildings two lives and melding the residence into a coherent form. “The white faceted planes of the ceiling reference the highly picturesque roof forms of the surrounding Edwardian villas,” says architect Matt Gibson.
A concrete fireplace provides separation between living areas, complimenting the architectural proportion of the space while clean lines are found within furnishings such as the Tree Table designed by Jacob Plejdrup for DK3 juxtaposed against the suspended Aim light by Flos that hangs above it. “Throughout the home are many custom-designed features including light fittings, mirrors and joinery” explains Mim Design director, Miriam Fanning.
Elsternwick House | Mim Design | © Shannon McGrath