Cut Paw Paw Inside Out House is a renovation and extension to a double fronted weatherboard home in Seddon, Australia designed by Andrew Maynard Architects. Cut Paw Paw is the name of the parish in which the house presides. It caught the attention of the owners because it was unusual and unique — the architects liked it too, so it became the name of this inside out house.
Inspired by construction sites, Andrew Maynard Architects aimed to make a home that was every bit as fascinating and full of potential in this home. Therefore it is left deliberately incomplete, perhaps to be added to and expanded on as time passes…
"When wandering the street and stumbling upon an anonymous house in construction we all get excited by the possibilities. We all imagine what the finished building could be like. The site holds so much promise when there is nothing more than a timber or steel frame. It is a jungle gym, a relic, and a skeleton full of play and imagination. Often it is when a building is at its most beautiful.
All too soon the excitement, the imagination and the potential comes crashing down as the reality of the finished building becomes apparent. When the anonymous house is roofed, clad and finished it is often a disappointment as the banality of the McMansion emerges. The beautiful skeleton that held such potential and required such imagination has been buried beneath the ordinary, the obvious and the banal. The home will not again be interesting until it eventually begins to crumble and decay." — Andrew Maynard Architects
Derek and Michelle, the owners, asked that the house be 'ridiculously inside-out'. Andrew Maynard Architects use a number of strategies to ensure that the boundaries between inside and outside are not just blurred, but in most cases completely reversed.
Sliding walls, bifold doors and decks, and the fact that the building is left incomplete all help to invert the sense of indoors and outdoors.
"The central space, between the dining area and the studio, is an unclad frame within and surrounded by garden. It is both inside and outside. It is both a new building and an old ruin. It is both garden and home." — Andrew Maynard Architects
Andrew Maynard Architects have developed a reputation for their unique approach to sustainability. The sustainability of the final home is always at the heart of the initial design phases. In this case the extension hugs the southern boundary to provide maximum north light to the living areas. Sure, the architects could have just extruded the existing house's form, but this way the home will be cheaper to heat and more joyous to live in.
Additionally all windows are double glazed to keep the heat in in winter and out in summer. A white roof reduces heat absorption and minimises the home's urban heat sink impact. And high performance insulation has been added everywhere, even in the walls of the original house.
The master stroke for both sustainability and aesthetics is a pond which runs along the north facing windows. It provides a home for fish, plants and frogs, but also passively cools the house through natural evaporative cooling. You have to love a win-win design solution.
Water tanks and solar panels are a given as they are in all of Andrew Maynard's projects.
Inside Out House
Inside Out House captures the excitement and intrigue of a construction site without sacrificing the finesse and quality of a finished well-detailed project. It also succeeds in feeling both inside and outside. The connection between the indoors and outdoors is blurred to the point of not existing anymore, an outcome many architects strive for, but which is pulled off expertly in this project. Now, time to sit back and relax in that stunning outdoor bath…