Hiapo House – Home and Studio for John Pule

2020, D5

Hiapo House, is the dwelling and home studio of John Pule. He is renowned for his interpolation of the Niuean art of hiapo; an ancient way of communication through narratives inked onto barkcloth. The composition of many smaller narratives would assemble to form a complete work. His work would implement mythology, stars, ancestors, and native flora and fauna to support a greater narrative about love, loss, colonisation and other topics important to society.

The project itself is a rectilinear form, advertently not parallel to east or the shoreline, to instead orientate towards Niue – the artists birthplace. A massive basalt stone wall acts as a thermal mass anchor along the south façade, but also juxtaposes the glazed north

In section, the separate demarcated spaces each have their own unique tectonic expression. Explicitly communicated by the roof structure. This is the engine of hiapo – individual domestic functions have their own distinctive response by way of a unique volumetric interior space. Completing the building, a copper parapet surrounds the envelope and wraps the singular narratives into one whole storyline. The result is a rhythmic, chaotic, but uncanny connection with the world around them.