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Bridging the colour gap: Resene dishes out top honours

Auckland's bold red Clark Street Overbridge (below) by Architectus has been dished out top honours in the Resene Total Colour Awards for its unique use of colour in a very public space.

Awards were also given for the best colour use in: Residential Exterior, Residential Interior, Display + Product, Education, Rising Star (student), Commercial Exterior, Commercial Interior – Public + Retail Space, Commercial Interior - Office, Lifetime Achievement, with the Colour Master - Nightingale Award for the best overall colour use.

Read on for the lowdown on all the winners...

Resene Total Colour Master Nightingale Award

clark st overbridge resene total colour award 2012 winner

The Resene Total Colour Master Nightingale Award, named after the Nightingale family who founded and still run Resene today, recognises excellence in colour and paint use, and was awarded to Architectus for the Clark Street Overbridge. They also won the Resene Total Colour Commercial Exterior Award.

Judges found the use of colour surprising, turning a utilitarian commercial road bridge into a fantastic urban sculpture. Rhythmical in reds, the continuity in this project was delightful, they said, likening it to an art installation. Using three very similar shades of red was a brave choice that provided subtle movement, rather keeping them all the same or opting for more contrast.

Resene Total Colour Residential Exterior Award

WCC Regent Park Development by Designgroup Stapleton Elliott

The WCC Regent Park Development by Designgroup Stapleton Elliott won the Resene Total Colour Residential Exterior Award. This project also won the Resene Total Colour Maestro Nightingale Award. 

Judges agreed that this project positively contributes to the local community and greater built environment, standing out without being garish, using colour with a degree of sophistication not seen in other projects.

What could have just been a collection of similar houses provided individuality without being overpowering.  The colour gave each home a greater sense of ownership, allowing them to take on the moods of the day, in shadow and sun, generating a sense of movement with colour.

Resene Total Colour Residential Interior Award

Seel Residence by Parkhurst DesignSarah Quinlan Design The Nelson Project

 Judges said the Seel Residence by Parkhurst Design exemplifies balance and tone. The green tones are on trend and easy to live with; restful yet bold. Green is an ideal foil to timber, providing a great complementary background just as it does in nature. All the furniture was carefully chosen and ties in with the overall colour scheme creating a sense of atmosphere sympathetic to the 1938 brick and tile home.

Meanwhile, the striking floor finish of the Kingsland Art Project by Eucalyptus Design & Interiors was awarded a Resene Total Colour Residential Interior Colour Maestro Award. Often floors are left to blend into the background, but judges deemed this a commanding and magnificent playground, a work of art in its own right.

A Resene Total Colour Residential Interior Colour Maestro Award was also awarded to Sarah Quinlan Design Ltd for the Nelson Project. The colour palette is not only brave, said judges, but very well balanced with the reds creating a nice sense of proportion. The slightly metallic floor provides a subtle sense of movement and light and the texture provides added dimension and contrast to the bold finishes.

Resene Total Colour Education Award

Waipa Woodprocessing Workshop by Darryl
Church Architecture

Impactful colour used to enhance and decorate the timber of the Waipa Woodprocessing Workshop by Darryl Church Architecture was awarded the Resene Total Colour Education Award.

The Waipa Woodprocessing Workshop highlights sustainability with the broad use of natural materials while intricately using colour in highlighting. The natural screen over stained timber amplifies both materials and the dark stain behind the exterior screen creates play of light on the colour behind, and the use of green with the timber is reminiscent of fresh foliage.

Maestro awards went to McKenzie Higham Architecture for Amesbury School – which linked to a central project story of different languages and cultures, where colour was used to designate areas – and Avonhead School Learning Centre by Opus Architecture, an old building reinvigorated with gloriously colourful stripes and a wholly appropriate book spine look.

Resene Total Colour Commercial Exterior Award

Resene total colour awards 2012Again, this went to Architectus for Clark St Overbridge. But Wilson and Hill Architects claimed a Maestro award for The Chair, which judges said was like a classic Kiwi bach personified into an ensemble of beauty, colour, safety and intrigue.

The heritage hues of Atelierworkshop's White Hart Hotel also nabbed a Maestro prize, a renovation of an iconic building, where colour was used to draw attention to heritage features.

Resene Total Colour Commercial Interior – Office Award

resene total colour award 2012 beca fitout studio pacific architecture

Studio Pacific Architecture's Beca Fitout with its multiple storeys of colour dominated in this category. Judges said there was a lot of line and form in the overall composition of each area of the Beca fitout and the blocks of colour steady and ground it, with a touch of the monochromatic. In a predominantly commercial environment the night can be as important as the day, and at night, these spaces glow with a perfect juxtaposition of colour.  

resene total colour 2012 maestro

Element 17 received Maestro honours for The Radio Network Christchurch, where colour was used to freshen up an internal space with just one window and delineate teams and spaces, as did Spaceworks' Kiwiana scheme for the Google office fitout.

Resene Total Colour Commercial Interior – Public + Retail

Glassons queen st resene total colour award

Studio Gascoigne picked this up for the second year running. Judges said Glassons Queen Street has a refreshingly unusual colour palette that works dramatically well – acidic, both modern and vintage, extending to all surfaces including the ceiling.

kiwibank resene total colour award

Designworks' mixing of corporate colours in the Kiwibank/NZ Post Retail Transformation project earned it a Maestro award. Despite being tasked with blending difficult corporate shades, Designworks managed to bring both brands together within the overall space, with the stronger accent hues having room to shine.

And Xsite Architects' Monarchy Restaurant, with all its regal colourways, also qualified for Maestro honours. Judges praised its sumptuous colour that "envelops and draws you in", working with the existing brick and timber while adding another dimension and rich layer.

Resene Total Colour Display + Product Award

The rainbow tones of the Sang Siren by Sang Architects, created by artist Michael Smither, was deemed mouthwatering and delicious by judges. Colour adds a sense of spiral and movement beyond the structure, which is perfectly proportioned.

Boffa Miskell's Trestle Leg Series, immortalising New Zealand words under the Auckland Harbour Bridge, was awarded Maestro honours. Judges said it added to the space and encouraged lingering, demanding attention. The lettering's strength related to the colour choice and added clarity overall.

Resene Total Colour Landscape Award

A collaboration by Wright + Associates and Australia's Taylor Cullity Lethlean took out this category. Colour ensures that you see the highlights as you move around the space and there is a wonderful sense of discovery as you spot something new, calling to mind a nautical feel without resorting to cliché.

Meanwhile, Maestro awards went to BECA display garden Max's Pipe Dream, and Boffa Miskell's London Quay.

Resene Total Colour Rising Star Award

Resene total colour awards 2012The fusion of architecture and colour in the Arts & Crafts Cultural Mall by Grace Salisbury Mills won the Resene Total Colour Rising Star Award. There is an element of surprise and discovery of colour, cleverly used to theme different areas of the space. Rather than opting for end to end colour, the project takes a bold palette and carefully places it to maximum effect to contrast against the architectural backdrop.

Resene Total Colour Lifetime Achievement Award

The Resene Total Colour Lifetime Achievement Award was awarded to Di Lucas of Canterbury.  Ever since she graduated with a Landscape degree she has been advocating the sensitive use of colour. Perhaps being born and bred on Bendigo Station in Otago among the muted colours of tussock and rock, she was imbued with a sense of colour as something that complemented the landscape.

In 1970s when she was working as a landscape architect with Ministry of Works she was able to change the application of paint to public structures. She had the highways maintenance teams stop putting white paint on all structures, and blue and white on bridges. She encouraged and demonstrated the use of paint colour to respect the local landscape, such as the changing of the AJ Hackett bungy bridge from primer pink to possum brown.  White was only to be used for where needed for safety.

In 1982 Lucas was contracted by NZ Steel to design the first colour range for Colorsteel manufacture. For the standard range of colours she chose and named colours – Ironsand, Lignite, Scoria, Karaka, Lichen and Tussock.  It’s a tribute to the enduring quality of those colours that after 30 years, five out of the six colours remain in production and are some of the most popular colours available.