Monday, April 29, 2013

Tuscape home -

The Tuscan architectural style home has been done to death in SA and in the most part, regrettably very badly. so much so that  around polite dinner tables in cape town - even mentioning south african tuscan style  will conjure up an extreme house wife's Eire.  a design concept anger so intense, you will only know what hit you when you hear the sound of a steel butter knife scraping the inside of your spinal column.

so you can understand my trepidation when having the privilege of expressing this style in my architectural designs. that is why i call my tuscan style inspired design homes,  Tuscape design. in the cape we have winters, wind and rain and summer wind and sun which are  different to Tuscany.  rain is known to travel back up a  wall - thanks to the north wester wind or the once a year black south easter storm. so not having eaves and a few other typical capetonian design features - will render your purely European designed home in the local african elements, well,   rather vulnerable.

a word to the wise and the principle is thus -  the african sun and weather can be  incredibly harsh - and double glazing expensive windows which work very well in germany. will be renderred useless in 2 short african sun drenched years. so external features although inspired by our esteemed across the ocean first world countries. dont always work when bought of the shelf in europe and installed  here in africa. some items do , some dont - and that is why changing features of a pure design style are important to local setting application.

as my grandfather architect mello damstra used elements of various styles to create an eclectic maverick style of architecture to his work in cape town in the 20's. it is this inspiration and point of departure with this design.  starting with a gothic style gate , leading into a rich tapestry of local influence and tuscan concepts. with a nouveau inspired internal balustrade and an outline of the curvaceous feminine form for the external balustrade. the home is developing into a unique style - a Tuscape style one that enjoys the beauty of Europe with the practicality of an african setting.