A project for an extension to the rear of a house in Battersea, to house a new kitchen and dining space. The rear facades of the house and the adjacent garden have a northerly orientation. Creating a space that maximises the amount of natural light available to the interior, was therefore of particular importance. In addition the aim was to increase the sense of connection between the new kitchen diner and the garden. In this way the garden is considered almost as an outdoor room.
Therefore the approach has been to consider the design of the new kitchen and dining space as integral with the design of the garden space. The blurring of the inside and outside connection is achieved by the use of an extensively glazed rear elevation, composed of a fixed glass panel and a sliding timber framed door. The sense of the inside outside connection is amplified by the design of the kitchen worktop. The worktop is formed from polished concrete and is designed so that it appears to run through the fixed glass panel into the garden, where it steps down to form a bench. These ideas have been tested through the use of physical models to examine the spatial character of the scheme.
The new glazed opening is contained within a frame clad in handmade bricks. These are a slightly different colour, texture and proportion to the London stock brickwork that is used extensively in the neighbouring buildings. In this way the language of the new extension complements the surrounding context but reads as an addition to the existing house.
The choice of materials has been integral to the design process. The materials proposed, timber, concrete, brick share characteristics of inherent natural variation that are present in the material or the process that made it. Where spaces are simple and relatively uncluttered that natural variation and material quality can form the basis of the architectural expression.