Bringing transparency to a Hampstead Arts & Crafts home

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Finkernagel Ross Architects, a young Shoreditch-based practice, has designed a lightweight glass pavilion attached to a Grade II listed house in Hampstead.

Bringing transparency to a Hampstead Arts & Crafts home

Felix Finkernagel comments:

Our design involves detailed historic and contextual research we undertake, and demonstrates the practice’s innovative methodology, exploring and testing our concept, and then implementing these ideas throughout the delivery process.

The ‘parent’ structure is Grade II listed, built in the late 19th Century by the renowned Victorian architect Horace Field and considered by Nicolas Pevsner as an example of Field’s “early experimental work” and “…in the Tudor manor house fashion.

Bringing transparency to a Hampstead Arts & Crafts home
Model

Finkernagel Ross Architects tend to develop designs using a range of media, as part of the process of considering the brief, as well as the spatial and technical issues, aesthetics.

These processes are almost always based on scaled representations to assist architectural ‘thinking’, usually completed by the time tender documents are sent to the builders who will then interpret the production information and realise the designs. There is always a dichotomy between designer and builder, between representation of a design and its physical embodiment in the resulting built form.

Bringing transparency to a Hampstead Arts & Crafts home

Catherine Finkernagel adds: “With this project, we are departing from the traditional processes of design, procurement and construction, breaching the customary boundaries between them. The design process, whilst in many ways no different from any other project, has involved a full scale, 1:1 mock-up section of the most critical part of the construction of the extension.”

Bringing transparency to a Hampstead Arts & Crafts home
Sketch

The project demonstrates the practice’s appreciation of cultural heritage and tradition, and the considered approach taken when introducing contemporary additions. The new pavilion at Wedderburn Road is conceived as a ‘contrapuntal’ gesture – the design celebrates the parent building and yet provides a confident, unapologetically new, addition to the overall ensemble.