Viewed from the pool, this house, beautifully framed by white frangipani and red coral trees (see above), is another example of contemporary architecture in present-day Bali designed by the GM architects. The main volume is defined by two layers of overlapping shingled roofs. Gently sloping towards-and almost touching-the garden, they provide protection from the elements while creating wide spaces inside, where the use of natural woods and stone creates a feeling of tranquillity and harmony. From the living area, one looks out to an idyllic garden (see below left), which stages a beautiful collection of antique wood and stone objects.
The secret to the spare, contemporary beauty of the interiors is not immediately obvious, as the furnishings, when considered individually, are simple to the point of being plain. However,- the overall atmosphere is one of subtle luxury, achieved through the clever exploitation of volumes, shapes and materials.
The roof is set at several angles, and this variance is complemented in various ways, such as by the use of steps, and the introduction of a mezzanine in the living room. The mixture of smooth and rough surfaces and finishes also contributes to the effect. The result is a showcase of modern living in which the emphasis is on space and light, texture and quality.
This entrance captures the very essence of a house in which man’s need for protection from the elements is in perfect symbiosis with nature. The rich ironwood roofing provides all the comforting reassurance of shelter while the paving of white stone slabs and a pebble walk achieve the natural transition from outside to the inside. The whole feel of the setting is further highlighted by the reflection of the lily pond against the back wall and the traditional Saraswati sculpture of protection.
The skilful management of volumes and space transforms this simple sky-lighted corridor to the sleeping quarters and the detached master bedroom into an attractive area, which reflects the same contemporary elegance achieved throughout the house. The functional inbuilt teak display unit presents a collection of wood and stone fossils, which contrasts with the modern linear form of the standing lamp, designed by Marc Le.
Set on an elegant pebble-washed floor in this dining room is a massive dining table resting on equally imposing trunks of black wood. Its size is offset by the warm wood tones, and its form is complemented by that of the dining chairs in teak and rattan. A modern glass and wood standing lamp by Marc Le blends in well to this contemporary environment well, completing the subtle elegance.
In the living area, the contemporary design of the stone slab of the coffee table resting on two smooth wooden supports; the interesting detail of the lamp stands formed from ancient stone pillar capitals from Java; and the visual impact achieved by two finely-decorated Batak support columns on a smooth ivory stone base, from Sumatra, are examples of how contrasts in shapes, materials and age can be blended to bring about a clean, modern look.
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