Two years before renovations began for this home of registered architect Kelvin Wang and his banker wife, Jocelyn Neo, the design wheels were already in motion. The brief evolved during this time, but they were very clear about some things from the onset.
“The design centres on the use of grey concrete, brown wood textures and the colour black – a neutral palette that’s never out of fashion. We plan to live here for at least the next 10 years, so the design needs to reflect our aspirations, suit our lifestyles and stand the test of time,” says Kelvin.
AT A GLANCE
Who lives here: A couple in their late 30s
Home: A five-room BTO flat at Bedok South Road
Size: 1215 sq ft
ID: Kelvin Wang
Both fans of brutalist architecture, they wanted the monolithic and volumetric articulation, the raw textures and patina, and the wabi-sabi philosophy of embracing imperfections to be incorporated. However, they also acknowledged that the brutalist style may not be entirely appropriate for a home.
“In its purest form, brutalism can be, well, brutal, devoid of warmth and cosiness. To mitigate this, we incorporated Scandinavian elements such as wood and green to tame the harshness,” Kelvin explains.
Almost all the apartment was completely gutted. Other than the walls around the two bathrooms, all the other internal walls were either demolished or realigned.
The floors were re-tiled or overlaid, the lighting and electrical layout was entirely reconfigured, and drop ceilings were introduced in some areas to conceal services. Furnishings excluded, the renovation cost about $150,000.