When designing his family home in Remuera, Auckland, Paul Clarke of Studio2 Architects took inspiration from the forms and materials of the home originally on site, as well as family memories and his personal love of art. For the lighting, he looked at how he could create new ways to enjoy each space, working with Inlite to achieve the final design.
“I love the idea that a project is as exciting if not more at night,” explains Paul. “That transformation from day to night and the way the light is cast at night makes you see things differently. It changes the way you experience the space.”
Paul knew he wanted to work with Inlite Lighting Designer Chris Watt, having worked with him on projects over the last 15 years. “We’ve built a relationship over a long period of time, so Chris understands what we’re looking for,” says Paul. “He’s prepared to throw ideas at you that you may not have thought of. That creates quite a bit of joy in the process.”
Working together they selected a range of lighting fixtures, primarily from Inlite’s Belgian Delta Light range. The collaborative design process led to a detailed lighting design which places materials, memories and joy at the centre of the home.
A warm welcome
Clever lighting details create a sense of warmth and welcome on approaching the home, starting with the study which features a bay window lit with two subtle lights that create an incredible glow. “If it's on at night time, you come down the drive and you have this little box that’s like a gem — with Deb [Paul’s wife] working there, and quite often the dog in the bay window.”
Further along, guests are greeted by a motif representing the family, set into the in-situ concrete wall and subtly lit from below. And upon entry, a corridor which features reused timber cladding with precast concrete poured over top, is lit from below, casting interesting shadows. “The lighting highlights all the dags between walls where the concrete was poured,” says Paul. “The light shines up and creates all these images of really beautiful mountains.”
Adaptable interior spaces
On the interior, the lighting meets both practical lighting needs for Paul’s avid-reader wife and Paul’s desire to use lighting to transform different spaces. “Through the placement of different lights we can create really intimate experiences,” says Paul. “We often change the lights depending on who is home and what we’re doing.”
Lighting has also been used to subtly highlight art pieces, while sensor lights in hallways and bathrooms make for easy living.
Creating a sense of play
In the kitchen, bespoke weighted light fixtures provide a playful touch that brings back memories for Paul. “Where I grew up in Dunedin, we had a billiard table with weighted lights which changed heights whether you were playing billiards, snooker or pool,” explains Paul. “I loved that idea of mechanisation without it being so complex as to be motorised.”
The lights can transform the kitchen bench into a casual dining area, and have also caught the attention of playful visitors. “I really enjoy that playfulness,” says Paul.
Enjoying the outdoors
Outdoors, the 2700k LED colour temperature of the interior lighting provides a cosy, inviting view of the home, while lighting of different outdoor areas creates new visual effects.
The outdoor room features subtle, soft lighting with an open fire, while the concrete slab flooring of the open area adjacent has been underlit with LED strips, providing a cosy atmosphere. And then there’s the 75-year-old oak tree at the bottom of the section which has been lit from beneath, creating a whimsical feature that changes with the seasons.
The careful selection of Inlite luminaires both inside and out and the beautiful way they light the home demonstrates the eye for detail that Chris and Paul both share. “I think we did an outstanding job,” says Paul. “We worked together and I think that idea of collaboration and working as a team is really special and important. We’re delighted with the way the home presents itself at night.”