Located in Kent, the Black House is a new project completed by Winchester-based AR Design Studio, with inspiration leaning towards both historic and modern buildings in the area. After visiting architectural sites in Kent, the design plan came together, including the cantilevered form, which was inspired by the Sissinghurst Castle Garden. The garden’s layout, which is broken into a series of separate moments that remain disguised due to the hedges and brick walls, can only be seen in full from the writing room of the central tower in the castle.
The rectangular form was broken up into blocks that were separated to create a central courtyard, while also ensuring that each one focused on a particular aspect of the garden. An additional block was added to the top for views, along with a cantilevered roof that helps join the modules together.
The exterior is clad in vertical black timber, a reference to Hasting’s historic net huts and black clad home of Dungeness.
The blocks of the house are linked together to create an experience as you move through the house. It begins at one of the three entrances, which are designed along the axes of the building.
The living room faces the pool to the west, while the kitchen and casual dining room faces east for morning sun and cantilevers out 7.3 meters over the driveway. The rooms have floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors that open to take in the views of the orchard and vineyard.
Photos by Martin Gardner.