At first glance, the minimalist principal of using commercial materials for modern homes might seem a little incongruous in a stunning natural environment. But when you pay close attention to the ecological benefits and the aesthetic value of steel, glass and aluminium, these materials don't seem out of place after all.
Architect Edward Duc has spent three decades working with highly engineered materials and found in a remote setting, their properties can still surprise him. In the Hunter Valley home featured here, he discovered the architectural steel panels not only provide insulation and a clean lined exterior, they also reflect the sky's changing hue.
"As the external coating on the panels is metallic, their colour changes throughout the day. The home can appear silver, bronze or purple depending on the location of the sun," Duc says.
Choosing materials that have multiple purposes ensures the best possible use has been made of every facet of the home's construction, he says. The same design ethos is apparent in the home's bold architectural design.
This 60ha property in the Australian hinterland enjoys uninterrupted views of a ridge dense in native bush. The house has been built upon the brow of a hill, with the roof line following the downward contour of the land.
The roof's slope enables water collection to fill two 20,000L of water tanks located under the house. It is then pumped 10m to the top of the water tower at the entrance to the home. Released from this height, water acquires enough pressure for ordinary household consumption.