9.28.2009

A Room with a View (Of a Cemetery)

Now here's a man who is wholeheartedly committed to a view. I can respect that.

Working with architect Eldridge Smerin, Richard Elliott took quite a few design measures to integrate the Victorian Highgate cemetery into his house, and by extension, it would seem, his life: the kitchen sits atop the house, the furniture in the living area is mirrored, and the floor is covered in black granite in reference to tombstone materials. And, I suppose that when Elliott wants the total effect of his surroundings, he cracks open the retractable roof on his kitchen to bask in the graveyard glow. (WHAT. RETRACTABLE ROOF??! That's SKY in the second picture?!)

I did some research of my own to get to the bottom of who this Elliott is, as it takes a special kind of individual to commit to a cemetery like this, right? Apparently, he's a chartered surveyor and avid "music mixer" (DJ?) who lives in the house alone. Maybe the DJing explains the bizarre clubby neon pink light in his stairwell (which I'm weirdly drawn to, for some reason).

My question is: can you imagine living here? The cemetery is certainly central to the lifestyle promoted by this architecture, and I suppose that might be a problem for some, but for me, the real issue is the sparseness! As someone more comfortable surrounded with layers upon layers of STUFF, I'm always in awe of those who can live with minimalism, like Elliott, who has obviously chosen to do so as a way of emphasizing his most unusual plot of land.







Scans from Graveyard Shift, World of Interiors, March 2009.

6 comments:

Pigtown-Design said...

the whole story about the house is pretty interesting!

Maria Confer said...

The design is so gorgeous and cool, but I agree way to sparse for me. I would love to live by an old cemetery, but I bet my imagination would run wild and I would be scaring myself all the time.

lululetty.blogspot.com

Off the List said...

I loved loved loved this house but loathed the way it's furnished.

As to cemetaries bring it on and electricity pylons, and factories, and industry....even better if it's felt to be marring the antique.

Wentworth Woodhouse was 'blighted' by coal mines apparently - I couldn't be happier with such a demesne about my castle!

Oh ranting - sorry!

-h said...

i wish i could snap my fingers and be living in here (minus the cemetery location)

Lauren said...

Off the List- I very much enjoyed this comment. Keep ranting, please! As for the location, I agree. Really, who could possibly be distraught about coal mines?! Googling Wentworth House right now...

. said...

I visited Highgate Cemetery about 3 months ago - and I was eyeing this house with curiousity. On one of the floors there was a lovely majestic brown piano and I itched to find out who owns the house. Strangely this article doesn't seem to show the piano so I wonder if it has changed hands?

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