Whale Tail House, King Island

Andrew, Dianne and their son Will Blake had been living and working in the arts with indigenous communities in Northern Australia for 20 years. Wanting a change of life with time and space to pursue their own art practises, they found a patch of windswept coastline on King Island in the middle of Bass Strait and decided to make it their home.

Their chosen house site was on the sinuous ridge line of a secondary dune with a good northerly aspect and stunning views in all directions, set back a short distance from a sweeping stretch of white sand beach.

The design of their house was born over a weekend on the site, devining the form of the house from the undulating landscape, the passage of the sun, the prevailing weather conditions and the strong view axiis.

The resulting design has a striking and unique form embedded in the dune, providing protection from the harshest winds while gathering the warmth of the sun through the day across it’s faceted northern facade.

The Blake’s house is totally detached from the energy grid with all of the power generated on site from a photovoltaic array and battery bank housed in a separate purpose built structure. The energy efficiency of the house is further enhanced with thermal mass in both the concrete slab and internal masonry walls.

The Blake’s house was completed in early 2013 and featured on Australian Grand Designs as part of Series 4 on December 5 2013 (Lifestyle Channel).


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