A Restorative Blend of Home and Art

A Restorative Blend of Home and Art

By vira

Story by Iman Hidajat | Photos by Georges Altman

The house owners in Denpasar, Bali have a dream of living in a comfortable home, which also serves as an art space. They could not realise it until they entrusted the home renovation to Xavier Loup, a landscape architect and designer with artistic talent.

A unique back-lit frame for digital family pictures

Umah Jempiring, that’s the house is named, is situated in Denpasar’s stunning residential area. It was built in 1998. After 22 years of living in the house, the couple felt the need to refresh and remodel it so as to realize their dream of living in a comfortable home which allows them to enjoy their art collections more. Design-wise, the house was surrounded by ample space to enjoy outdoor views from all the indoor living areas.

Spending a big chunk of time at home due to the pandemic, the couple realized that their house could be much better as a living space with a good design and well-directed indoor and outdoor interactions. That’s how they came up with an idea of renovating the house. The house owners entrusted the renovation work to Xavier Loup, an Art Director and Landscape Architect.

Xavier explained that, at first, the garden looked empty. It only had one tree, grass, and a few potted plants scattered around. Reversing this area, the landscape architect wanted to turn it into something visually substantial viewed from different angles, from the living room, the kitchen, the master suite, and also as the perspective view from the entry hall. From the dining room, there was a direct view of the garden. He came to the idea of placing a 6 x 3 meters mirror on the back of the wall, reflecting the garden with impressive depth and presence. It almost feels like the living room inside the garden!

Overlooking the beautiful landscape backyard

Arduous renovation efforts were made as Xavier and his team had to rework all the plumbing, wiring, walls, roof, and floor before bringing in all the interior design elements. He pointed out that it took longer to renovate than to build one as the renovation project adopted European construction standards.

Everything has been custom-made to create coherence between the spaces and their functions. All the elements are a fusion of natural materials designed to blend with the outdoors and artworks. It had to be very subtle and minimalist. The colour palette had to be very fresh, light, soft and pastel-coloured for the indoor living spaces connected to outdoor spaces via patios or gardens, as shades of the plants aesthetically influenced the perception of indoor spaces.

The stairs as the focal point and artworks around it

Meanwhile, the owners have a deep passion for Indonesian art in many forms, from traditional dance, hand- painted batik and hand-woven fabrics from many parts of Indonesia. They like to be able to display those fabrics, sculptures and paintings. Both of them love contemporary arts. While they acquired some of the paintings occasionally, they also plan to change the display with a different theme, and it feels like it has been made easy to do with the renovation.

To accommodate what the owners plan to display, walls and door frames were neutralized by painting them off-white, a colour that works with the gallery-style lighting for the paintings. Furthermore, versatile lights were used to fit for art viewing as in a gallery and, at the same time, suitable for a home.

Friends and family dining table to enjoy togetherness and another artwork

Upon completion, the owners express satisfaction with the result, which is better than expected. Through every project phase, Xavier understands their need for a house where they want to live comfortably and enjoy the art collections in their daily life.

“There is a connection between the indoor and outdoor as one very nice living space. It is like one beautiful painting,” the lady of the house said, complementing their newly renovated house.

Garden view from the master bedroom

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