Books

Homes that em­brace the out­doors, and the in­te­ri­ors of ac­com­plished cu­ra­tors

NZ House & Garden - - NOTED -

UR­BAN SANC­TU­ARY: THE NEW DO­MES­TIC OUT­DOORS

Anna John­son and Richard Black, Thames & Hud­son, $80, 267 pages, hard­back

The shrink­ing size of build­ing sites means not a sker­rick of space can be wasted, and de­sign­ing out­door ar­eas is in­trin­sic to the ar­chi­tec­tural process. We might be more tightly packed these days, but con­nec­tion to the out­doors is a fun­da­men­tal hu­man need, the authors say. Ur­ban Sanc­tu­ary ex­am­ines 25 projects, all Aus­tralian ex­cept for three no­table New Zealand ex­am­ples. Pools slot­ted into tiny spa­ces, gar­den pavil­ions, nifty slid­ing doors that al­low un­en­cum­bered out­oor ac­cess, rooftop and shared gar­dens – plenty of in­spi­ra­tion for any­one who wants to build a home that lets the out­doors in. Rose­mary Bar­r­a­clough is NZ House & Gar­den’s as­so­ci­ate edi­tor

THE ALCHEMY OF THINGS: IN­TE­RI­ORS SHAPED BY CU­RI­OUS MINDS

Karen McCart­ney, Mur­doch Books, $69.99, 271 pages, hard­back

One of the year’s most fas­ci­nat­ing in­te­ri­ors books presents the lay­ered homes of 18 cre­atives from Aus­tralia and Europe – artists, in­te­rior de­sign­ers, ar­chi­tects and col­lec­tors. McCart­ney’s in­sight­ful text ex­plores the lives and philoso­phies of those who cre­ated these in­trigu­ing spa­ces, from a Bel­gian de­signer who dreams of liv­ing in a spare con­tainer in the woods but has a ware­house full of fur­ni­ture, to the dyslexic boy who grew up to own a gallery. What they all share is the abil­ity to find and cu­rate seem­ingly in­com­pat­i­ble and of­ten ob­scure odd­i­ties. Who would think a curvy, sculp­tural gold table base topped with a gritty Con­golese mask would work? It does. Rose­mary Bar­r­a­clough

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