The summerhouse is conceived as a seasonal hideaway for a hackney-based family of four. They all needed more and safe play space as the children are growing older. The new space should serve as a painter's studio, garden shed, table tennis venue and sleep-over place. Developing the somewhat neglected rear of their garden became and alternative to moving away into a larger property.
The outside of this timber structure is clad in thin skins. Beyond weather protection these surfaces are meant to re-enforce the presence of the garden and to frame the seasons. An 8m long mirror reflects the diverse floral range and defies the solidity and proximity of the wall it is mounted on. semi-transparent striped polycarbonate interferes with the shadows of the moving leaves above. the summerhouse sits in the rear of an elongated victorian garden and the design attempts to screen out this urban setting. baroque ideas of illusion, distortion, camouflage and capture of nature create a contemporary, rigorous and surprising building.