If you are looking for a designer to do up your outdoor space then do think of Jamie Durie. But wait a minute, only if you are not looking for a traditional parterre garden that’s for sure…but then again, maybe for parterre with a twist!!
“My work is always a collaboration with the occupants and the clients that come to me usually are drawn to me because they like my style of designing; modern, contemporary, and a slightly Asian-resort like influence. I like to think outside the square with my designs. I like making outdoor spaces people-friendly and design them for ‘living’ outdoors. What underscores my work is the philosophy of bringing all the elements of living that we have indoors, outside. So that the indoors and outdoors merge seamlessly.” This is how Jamie responded when asked about the thinking that underscored his work.
Jamie Durie, a Sri Lankan by birth is a horticulturalist and an international award-winning landscape designer, and founder and director of Durie Design. In spite of being based in Australia he and his likeminded team take on projects that could be almost anywhere across the globe. Jamie is the author of 9 best-selling books – 100 Gardens, Jamie Durie’s The Outdoor Room, Outside, The Source Book Editions 1 and 2, Inspired, Outdoor Kids, The Outdoor Room and Patio – Garden Design and Inspiration.
He is the founder and Editorial Director of The Outdoor Room magazine, and is a successful television host and producer.
A committed environment warden he takes every care to use natural, sustainable materials for his craft and sees to it that the lowering of the carbon footprint is not a mere consideration but a fundamental part of his client/Earth friendly design.
Drawing inspiration from nature, Jamie’s designs seem to have an otherworldly quality about them. Peppered with elements of the vast natural beauty and drama of the Australian landscape and his passion for Eastern culture and his lifestyle based on his Sri Lankan heritage, he creates happy and simple outdoor spaces that chronicle an ongoing dialogue between the architecture, people and the landscape.
We showcase here one project of Durie Design – Rosebay Garden. Talking about the initial stages of the project Jamie says, “The owners had already renovated their house beautifully and I just needed to extend the comfort and luxury present indoors outward. The family that lives here loves the outdoor lifestyle and likes to entertain. They were very clear about what they wanted in their garden; an area to cook, dine, swim and relax in. They wanted a space that was contemporary, with clean lines and the feeling of a resort at home.”
Moving away from the norm Durie Design arranged the garden design into different zones those being music, food, colour, temperature, texture and in experiences in general. Different levels were created which brought about impact and intrigue into the garden and this became one of the most important features of this garden. “Without this it would have been a flat monologue.” The team felt.
In the project Rosebay Garden, Durie Design has pushed the status quo of an average garden design and all the basic elements that stand for the firm’s design credo have been incorporated: incremental changes of level, the swimming pool doubling up as a water feature, simple upright structural foliage plants that minimise screening while increasing useable floor space and finally, a subtle blend of natural and man-made materials.
We asked Jamie if he saw his craft as an instrument of transformation and he responded thus, “Yes definitely! As my work connects people with plants and because we as humans are intrinsically connected to nature, this enhances our wellbeing – there is a process of transformation for the client and that’s what I really love about what I do.”
When asked if he had any favourites in terms of the flowering plants or trees he employs in his design he says, “I love all plants really, but especially those that have a strong sculptural and textural quality.”
Text By Mala Bajaj
Photographs Durie Design