On a ridge overlooking the vineyards, orchards and the valleys of Gruyere in the Shire of Yarra Ranges, a striking, contemporary house and garden was conceived by owners of Medhurst Wines, Robyn and Ross Wilson.
The concept for the house in the Architect’s words was: "two black horizontal strokes, drawn on a wide rolling quilt of well-behaved vineyards, patched with eucalypts and stitched with cypress".
The brief and subsequent concept for the landscaping around the residence was to provide a ‘setting’ that was elegant and restrained; provided functional external spaces that could be lived in; and related to both the vineyard and wider landscape of the Yarra Valley. A swimming pool was to be included, as was a kitchen garden.
The house is a striking, levitating pavilion of steel, concrete and glass. The landscape treatment immediately around the house is restrained without being austere. It is a sculptural approach employing land shaping to form oblong terraces reflecting the rectangular planes of the architecture, and soft batters and curved edges in effective counterpoint. The palette consists of swathes of Lomandra ‘Tanika’, avenues of Manchurian Pears, immaculate lawn and bolstering of the existing Eucalypt forest. Plant massing is used in a ‘painterly’ way to provide a unifying, but kinetic pedestal for house.