Rodic Davidson Architects replace an old fisherman’s cottage in the unique landscape of the Dungeness beach, Kent, England, with an imposing two-story structure embellished with dark-stained larch walls.
North Vat, as the property is titled, builds reference to the traditional Dungeness fishing huts and their rustic bitumen stained walls, to ensure the house remains compliant to the sparse natural landscape. But the London-based design studio also wanted to develop the property to display its own identity through ‘breaking away from conventional layout and form’; which was achieved by segregating the building into three black-stained timber cabins.
The project takes on greater value when considered alongside the geographical makeup of Dungeness – the only place in the UK to be officially classified as a desert. To enhance the relationship with the landscape, every room in the large two story block is connected by frameless glazing which allows an internal flow between each space while simultaneously diminishing the cluster technique deployed in traditional fisherman huts.
“Our brief was to create a single living environment, allowing for entertainment, enjoyment and art,” explained Ben Davidson of Rodic Davidson Architects.
“This was to be a calm and simple space where everyday activities could co-exist and all aspects of the surrounding landscape could be observed.”
The uniform aesthetic of the house is enhanced by the vertically stretching larch boards, that adopt a stealth-inspired dark colour finish as opposed to the traditional bitumen used to waterproof cabins.
Subsequently, the combination of the minimal details and the triumvirate of individual structures celebrate the inherent beauty of simple, elemental forms. Even though, the North Vat may be just one of a number of architectural projects on the Dungeness plains, it exists to be the very best yet.