This eccentric house for an tree-changing maritime artist and his family floats serenely in the seas of wheatfields and vines in the western slopes of NSW is subject to arctic winters and saharan summers. The architectural response was to create a curved coccoon of straw bale walls around masssive rammed earth internal walls and recycled kiln brickwork fireplaces with double glazed doors to the northern sun and a joined timber frame of recycled oregon timbers from a wharehouse demolition in a nearby town.
The owner/artist was involved in every step of the build alongside the architect and a steady tream of workers and contractors.
Through passive solar deisng, natural stack ventilation, thermal mass principles and hyper insulation, the house maintains an optimal 19 – 22 degree internal diurnal cycle while the outside temperatures soar to 40+ and drop to minus 10! Snow from Mt Canobolas piles 1m high against the southern walls while sun streams in through the Northern glazing on the sheltered lee of the building.
Check out the cover of the instigational ‘Straw Bale House’ book.