An existing warehouse conversion has been transformed into a “concrete bunker” for two design professionals in Camperdown.
With its use of rendered finishes and rejection of ornamentation, this apartment has been conceived as an intimate, yet utilitarian space inspired by Brutalism and the local warehouse vernacular.
The brief was for a redesign of an existing warehouse conversion in Camperdown, for a couple seeking a minimalist home design to match their lifestyle. The overall aim was to transform the neat but very ordinary space into a pared back, geometric interior space that would still celebrate the neighbourhood’s industrial heritage.
While the interiors are intentionally dark and brooding, this is contrasted with a full-height glazed wall, which floods the apartment with light.
Interior elements have been created as “raw and extruded concrete monoliths”; for example, the fluted kitchen joinery, curved ceiling forms and cement-rendered bathroom. A mid-century modern touch has also been added through film-faced plywood and American Oak joinery, brass accents and statement lighting.
The interiors represent a departure from the cliched “industrial” warehouse aesthetic and typical “Sydney” design approach that prioritises light, natural and breezy spaces. De-materialisation is at the core of the concept, with all elements reduced to bare essentials. Sustainability has also been at the core of all design decisions, resulting in the use of VOC-free finishes, strict use of FSC timbers, reduced use of chrome and cement, and a construction process that was streamlined to minimise waste.
Furthermore, despite the apartment being a “concrete bunker”, very little cement was used. The “solid” concrete elements are Glass Reinforced Cement (GRC) and the “concrete finish” has been achieved with a French Wash Porter’s Paint.