House for Essex is designed by FAT Architecture and Grayson Perry in Wrabness, England. It is both an artwork in itself and the setting for a number of works by Perry exploring the special character and unique qualities of Essex. The building has been designed to evoke the tradition of wayside and pilgrimage chapels. It belongs to a history of follies, whilst also being deeply of its own time.
House for Essex has been designed to evoke the tradition of wayside and pilgrimage chapels
Inspired by various different architecture from Stave churches, arts and crafts houses, and English Baroque churches, A House for Essex is designed like a pilgrimage chapel and dedicated to a saint – a fabricated one of course – called Julie Cope. The house combines two different programmatic demands: an immersive ‘chapel’ orientated around the contemplation of a number of artworks and a comfortable and practical house in which to stay.
House for Essex’s design represents a genuine collaboration between art and architecture
The design represents a genuine collaboration between art and architecture. It was developed through a series of workshops where the architect and the artist explored ideas together. The process combined approaches from each discipline, employing 1:1 maquettes and sculptures as well as traditional forms of architectural representation. The house explores the role of narrative in contemporary architecture.
The house is clad in some two thousand handmade tiles; which along with the roof sculptures, have all been created from originals produced by Grayson. With a golden roof and windows increasing in size from front to back, the house extends and ‘grows’ across the sloping site. Internally, the exuberance continues through a series of multi-layered and intricately detailed colored spaces in which further artworks are featured.