Belfast Telegraph

The origami house that Jane built picked to feature in US show Extreme Homes

This Ulster architect's home always looked good on paper...

BY AMANDA FERGUSON

A stunning 'Origami House' in Co Antrim is to feature on the upcoming series of popular US show Extreme Homes.

Architect Jane Burnside's unique property just outside the quiet village of Kells is the only building in Northern Ireland selected to feature on the programme due for broadcast later this year.

A film crew from London will spend two days shooting in the award-winning residence for the show which reaches a global audience of 80 million via Homes And Gardens TV.

In the five years since it's been built, Jane's home has been nominated and won a series of architecture awards, including triumphing in the Co Antrim category of the BBC House of the Year awards a few years ago.

Jane, originally from Magherafelt, has been in practice for more than 20 years and shares the beautiful open plan residence she designed with her husband David, also an architect, and their two sons, Chris (15) and Ryan (12).

"It's the first house I've built for myself," Jane told the Belfast Telegraph last night.

"It's called the Origami House. The idea was to build the house to look like a clachan of cottages in the green landscape. It's an abstract idea of that, and on the other side it's all glass."

Jane and her family adore their home and five years on it still brings them joy every day.

"On flat, rainy days like today where the clouds are touching the grass the house still feels bright and there is a great connection to the landscape," she added.

"Instead of a series of cellular rooms, it's all open plan, one big space."

When the company behind Extreme Homes approached Jane she initially found it hard to come to terms with her house being classed in the category.

In the past a $30m mega home in Las Vegas, a glass mansion in Canada and a Miami penthouse complete with helipad have featured on the show, so Jane wasn't sure where her Kells property would sit in the usual line-up.

"I was wondering how my house fits in, but it was explained to me that everybody has different ideas about what extreme means," she said.

"The team liked my house because it was taking a simple idea and linking into the Origami folded shape inside and because it is extremely beautiful."

BACKGROUND

Architect Jane Burnside's 'Origami House' in Kells has been selected to feature on US show Extreme Homes.

Origami is the traditional Japanese art of paper folding.

Jane's house is designed to look like a clachan, a type of small traditional settlement common in Ireland until the middle of the 20th century. The word clachan is composed of two elements, 'clach' meaning stone and 'an' meaning a monastic stone-cell or a paved road or causeway, which in the earliest period were most commonly found leading to or from a church or cell.

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