2020 Houses Awards: New House Over 200m2

Subiaco House by Vokes and Peters

Jury comment

Subiaco House by Vokes and Peters is radical by stealth. It wears the uniform of its Federation-era neighbourhood with polite grace: timber bay windows on street elevations; an exuberant hat of terracotta tiles; rainwater heads like neat broaches on notched lapels; and its rafters, battens and struts glimpsed in flashes of the petticoat. The home’s finely detailed interiors are rich with material and tectonic expression, in tile, stone, concrete, metal and timber. Skirts and cornices are there but not there. Neat ankles touch down lightly.

This polite heritage response belies the home’s true radical heart. Its planning subverts the object-in-landscape, “garden suburb” type. The ground-floor wall extends to the site boundaries, transforming from bay window to gate to arbor, fence to screen, engaged seating, entry, circulation. It harnesses the “public” front garden of the house, coopting it into the private space of the house, while also cunningly giving it back to the street. Inside and outside are drawn together, as are public and private. The suburban corner is held by an occupiable cloister edge, as if the Federation house figure-ground diagram now has intriguing shades of grey at its periphery. It is an expansive and radical rethinking of the suburban garden fence.

For further coverage, read Simon Pendal’s review of Subiaco House.

The Award for New House over 200 m ² is supported by Brickworks. See full image galleries of all the winning and shortlisted projects here.


Vokes and Peters
Project Team
Stuart Vokes, Aaron Peters, Emma Robinson, Kirsty Hetherington, Marty Said
Structural and hydraulic engineer, energy assessment Structerre
Site Details
Location Subiaco,  Perth,  WA,  Australia
Site type Suburban
Project Details
Status Built
Completion date 2018
Category Residential
Type New houses



Published online: 31 Jul 2020
Words: 2020 Houses Awards Jury
Images: Christopher Frederick Jones


Houses, August 2020

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