London

Valhalla - Denizen Works

Following a competitive interview in 2015, Denizen Works was selected to renovate the tired-looking façade of a modernist house in Highgate.

valhalla-denizen-works-3In such a neighbourhood, a striking proposal was required, one that reflected the urban context and transformed the appearance of the home – all within a depth of 320 mm.

Inspiration was drawn from the clients’ fascination with the macabre: close to Highgate Cemetery, the house is christened ‘Valhalla’, and displays topiary tombstones on its roof terrace.

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While the mirrored façade of the neighbouring property celebrates the living trees of Waterlow Park, this scheme uses ‘traumatised’ wood, made as dead as possible with a blackened, charred finish.

Echoing the vertical rhythm of the trees, the new elevation is composed of a series of English Larch glulam fins, attached to the façade using bespoke galvanised ‘top-hat’ brackets, developed with the engineer.

Individually charred, each timber fin bears the nuances of a hand-crafted surface, cracked like crocodile skin.

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Images © Ben Blossom