An artist and her pilot-husband asked for an inventive, affordable house and studio. The beautiful setting, on the steep southern hangs of the Magaliesberg, faces Pretoria. To the north it borders on the Magaliesberg Nature Reserve, to the south it overlooks suburban Pretoria. Both the Voortrekker Monument and Freedom Park are visible in the distance. The living pavilion steps along the contours of the slope, sidestepping the most important indigenous trees. Elevated platforms relate to thresholds, rituals and particular views. From a pragmatic point of view it provides the opportunity to build the structure in different phases, in accordance with a tight budget.
The platforms are united with a slanting roof which follows the incline of the site. This provides a multitude of spatial opportunities in between the various platforms.
Studio and house are separated by the entrance courtyard. The artist, a sculptor, reduces tree trunks to both beautiful wooden sculptures – and clever satires on everyday culture. The studio takes on an organic shape, derived from the contours on site. It nestles cosily between city views and the best of both north and south. A staircase extends to the first platform for living: a simple rectilinear pavilion by contrast to the organic studio. Service cores, such as kitchen and bathrooms also take on curvilinear shapes, contrasting the rigid steel framework of the main pavilion. From the latter, platforms continue to step up the slope according to ritual.