This stunning home of expatriates Xavier and Carine Huyberechts is situated in Johannesburg, South Africa. Xavier is an architect with GLH & Associates Architects, who designed the family’s dream home, which was originally in a derelict state when they got it. There was a magic of the place, and they immediately fell in love. The home was built from scratch, full of grandeur in stateliness, intimacy in small spaces and charm in minimalism. The home possesses a quiet majesty in its open-plan, double-volume living room that seems to blend into the rolling garden, blurring the boundaries between indoors and outdoors. There is a soothing uniformity of the all-white color scheme, anchored by warm woods and brightened by the art-filled walls. The architect demonstrates a minimalist aesthetic throughout with rich and seamless tapestry of cultures that define , without pigeonholing, the house’s residents.
On the ground floor, the rooms flow into each other effortlessly, and striking art from the likes of William Kentridge, Kendell Geers and Marco Cianfanelli, as well as Xavier’s own impressive efforts, punctuate the walls and give the house a shot of color. The same sense of restraint in design, coupled with exuberance in art, continues upstairs, where the bedrooms are, with the master suite connected to the children’s and guest rooms by a raw steel and wire walkway that cleverly echoes a suspension bridge.
Despite the crisp minimalism that prevails, this is a house with a nostalgic and sentimental heart. For instance, above the bathtub in the master bathroom are two plaster casts of Carine’s torso while pregnant with their son, Kwame, and daughter, Almaz, reminiscent of primitive African fertility sculptures.
Photos: Elsa Young