As part of our exploration of the County and surrounding areas, we recently had the opportunity to visit a few true architectural gems – Otto Roger’s artist studio by architect Siamak Hariri and the Bata Residence (in Batawa) by architect John B. Parkin.
The Bata residence (currently being documented by Carleton University students) is a remarkable and well preserved example of Parkin’s residential work. Located up on the hill, the residence boats an incredible view overlooking the Town of Batawa. And though it is modest in size, it is clear that every detail was considered. A few memorable attributes include the family shoe closet (but of course), the bathroom colours, and the custom designed dining table.
The artist studio by Hariri was another fantastic discovery. Here we found a building, again modest and finely articulated, quietly nestled into the woods. But what was breath-taking was how the intimacy with nature extended into the studio with the light and the glow of the autumn coloured leaves.
Both these visits, unique and inspiring in their own ways, confirmed to me there is indeed a special ‘sense of place’ here. And that it is exemplified not just in our loyalist building stock, but also in our more recent architectural contributions.