architect stuart vokes

Among the many projects completed by Brisbane-based architecture firm Owen & Vokes is a contemporary prefab house called the White Series for Happy Haus. Since creating the firm in 2003, Stuart Vokes has overseen several furniture projects too, including this bedside library. But primarily the practice is known for its residential work. One home, pictured second from the top, was featured in the Christmas issue of InsideOut magazine. Stuart explained his approach to the interiors: "Walls are our ally. They allow us to manipulate particular and unique characters for each room. In relation to climatic control and comfort, solid walls are the cheapest technology and the most successful thermal and sound insulators." Interesting to consider in light of the current love of open-plan living.

Which five words best describe you? Searching for knowledge and beauty.

How did you get your career start and what path have you taken since? My father and grandfather both ran their own businesses. They taught me that work was life, work was virtuous, work was happiness. I suppose it was in my DNA that I establish my own practice.

What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt along the way? Be generous. One creates their own opportunities and happiness.

What’s your proudest career achievement? Having happy clients.

What’s been your best decision? Asking a cute shop girl on a date (she became my wife).

Who inspires you? My partners and colleagues - they bring a creative energy to the studio. I am also inspired by anyone who generates their own place to dwell, to exist in this world.

What are you passionate about? I am very passionate about my practice, which I share with Paul Owen and Aaron Peters.

Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Adolf Loos - late Viennese architect. I have learnt so much about room-making from studying his work.

What dream do you still want to fulfil? To make a project in Sweden or Japan would be sweet!

What are you reading? I am re-reading Junichiro Tanizaki's In Praise of Shadows, and David Malouf's 12 Edmonstone Street. I find that there is always something more to be found, something that I missed in my favourite books.

images courtesy of owen and vokes