The incredibly thoughtful and talented Nat Cheshire of Cheshire Architects, invites us into his world at home. A home of warmth, love and life. Come on in. . .
If we were in your living room right now, what would we see, smell and hear?
Embarrassingly, and yet I treasure it as much as anything in my life right now: you would hear ‘Into The Unknown’ from ‘Frozen 2’ at house-shaking volume. You would see me pirouetting with my daughter held high overhead while she holds her Elsa doll aloft above her own, completes the last half of each line and beams with delight. Under our feet is a beautiful old Kilim, and there are toys and playdough and paper and felt pens and cushion forts and picture books all over it. You would smell coffee brewing for my wife, and the last precious slab of Daily Bread under the grill.
What was the last placed you visited within New Zealand or internationally and how did it inspire you?
I hadn’t travelled for a while – the last major expedition was to Manhattan with Resident, where Emily Priest and I spoke about our endeavour with Jamie McLellan, Philippe Malouin and Sam Eichblatt. That company alone was fairly exciting, as was the crowd who included heroes like Tom Dixon and my NYC family. But it was potency of Resident’s work in the New York context that was breathtaking. The whole project was so bold and so confident. I’d not seen New Zealand design behave like this before. Not a hint of a silver fern. Just a really, really strong, clear proposition about design and about living. Your burnt orange rugs that softened the floors and danced with the colour of the brick walls have obsessed me since. Rufus Knight killed that room, it was superb, and we revelled in being a part of it. The rest of design week was wonderful, but Resident drew us back daily, like it had gravity. I met some special people there, and they are shaping my work still.
What daily ritual or routine is making ‘lockdown’ more enjoyable?
It has been a very full fortnight, but for a brief moment of respite each day: a family stroll up and down the street before dusk, drink in hand, and small girl on my shoulders. The newfound peacefulness of a silent motorway, exquisitely still, warm evenings and the sudden friendliness of strangers is surreal in the best of all possible ways, if for the worst of reasons. Though the noise must eventually return I hope we may as people at least continue in this vein of warmth.
Image of Nat Cheshire photographed by Adam Bryce