suckerPUNCH: describe your project.
tony OWEN: Eden is an inner city in-fill apartment building in Sydney’s Chippendale area. It contains 25 contemporary apartments with open plan living for the young urban dweller. Vertical louvres of varying colours and textures create a pattern on the eight-storey facade that is discernable only from a distance. The western side of Eden is visible from surrounding areas so we took the opportunity to treat the facade as a piece of sculpture in an urban landscape. Louvre fins in different colours and textures create an image that plays up the complexity of living in the city.”
Up close it’s just a part of the colour of the city, by when viewed from afar a distinct image emerges of fabric flowing in the breeze.
Five visual concepts were trialed, including the face of a beautiful woman, and subjected to an on-line vote on our website. Some Council officers even registered their preference, with the abstract fabric design being judged more appropriate than the graphic of the attractive blonde, the floating clouds, the cityscape and the CBD skyline.
The vertical louvres are there for more than just show; they function for sun control, privacy, and help to modulate temperatures within the apartments.
sP: what or who influenced this project?
tO: We have been interested for a while with the notion of streetscape as signage or billboard. Given the gritty and varied context of this building and the fact that it could be viewed from up close and from a range of distances it seemed the ideal location. Its relationship to the city and its very nature changes depending on where it is viewed from. In some places it is streetscape, in others it is artwork, in others it is skyline etc.
sP: what were you reading/listening to/watching while developing this project?
tO: Originally we had chosen Kate Blanchett’s face for the image. So there was definitely a cinematic thing going on. For something like this the inspiration is all around you.
sP: whose work is currently on your radar?
tO: Diller Scoffidio