As far as young talented architects go, Antonino Cardillo has displayed (excuse the use of a cliché) 'a maturity in his craft that is well beyond years'. Last year, he impressed our team with his 'House of Convexities' built near Barcelona, and today we got a pleasant surprise through this house that he has just designed in Melbourne, Australia.
Cardillo seems to sculpt his space, inside and out. The three-dimensional free flow merges walls and ceilings to form intricate, yet cohesive spaces. We do not see the textured treatment of the surfaces that made House of Convexities so special, but the volumes resulting from the interactive integration of the all the curvilinear and strait surfaces did yield some interesting results.
As the architect explains: Secretly, everyone is attracted to what he is afraid of and sometimes fear reawakens desires that cannot be confessed. We remain perturbed, recognising that in remote parts of our interior universe resides an apparent otherness. We discover that the concepts of identity and difference are ambiguous, and often, paradoxically, difference becomes an extraordinary instrument of investigation into our own identity.
Two distinct parts of a dwelling here become a pretext for telling a story between two diverse formal identities. Constructed in a suburb of Melbourne on a rectangular plot, in plan the house is in two parts: one public which in elevation looks like the upturned keel of a boat or a funny concrete moon that emerges from the pool in front, whose design is characterised by its sudden deviation from the straight pathway; the other, private part takes the form of a long, narrow building set against the perimeter, which, through the progressive decomposition of its component parts, creates a portico open to the garden but closed to the car park.
In being created in space, each of the two geometric identities retains an echo of a presumed common origin. Thus signs of one often appear in the other, though elaborated according to different processes. Therefore the strategy of occupying the space goes beyond the mere bringing together of the parts. Though diverse, the elements have a reciprocal relationship, and the sound of one resonates in the other; especially in the main large cave, where the achievement of this osmosis introduces doubt as to where identity finishes and where difference begins.
Concrete Moon House by Antonino Cardillo
2009 Melbourne Australia
Site area: 791 m2
Building size: 580 m2 (200 m2 basement)
Storeys: 2 + 1 basement