The second in our ‘name architect’ listings, make no mistake, is sitting on the precipice. Unlike the Russell Jack residence this morning which has been lovingly updated and sold promoting its obvious and winning architectural credentials this case (like so many others we’ve seen over the years) has interested parties choosing only to pander only to filthy development dollars and hence is down-playing, nay, concealing it’s architectural significance hoping that no one will notice. Well, newsflash, we notice*. MCM architecture throughout this land now has eyes on every corner and voices in every suburb and we refuse to let a significant CHANCELLOR AND PATRICK residence indeed the ARCHITECT’S OWN, go unnoticed. So here it is. Chancellor House II, designed by David Chancellor of Chancellor & Patrick Architects for himself and wife Phyllis Chancellor (c.1957). Burned to the ground in 1970 and rebuilt (the post floor plan images are of the original). A picturesque example from a firm which regularly reminds us of its brilliance up and down the Mornington Peninsula such as here and across Melbourne seen here and here. We have no need to go into the stunning aspects, materials, design and feel of this majestic residence nor why it manifests so much more inherent value than a white line and 1/2 an acre in the seventh ring of development hell. We could reel off historical tidbits such as this house was chosen as one of the ten most significant Australian houses and a finalist in the Architecture and Arts Awards 1958–1959. But what we really want to drive home to all those dullards who believe that janky townhouse speculators deserve first dibs on such precious Melbourne jewels, is that there are those who would pay to live and love it here – yes the millions – we have proven this in the recent Lind house fight. Protection, restoration and celebration are not the financial blow they are made out to be. In fact they make a suburb valuable and highly prized long after the polystyrene has rotten and non-code panels have caught fire on those dismal, quick-buck-non-designed townhouses. These homes are the sophistication and the chic that no glossy website will ever match. These recognised architectural pinnacles enhance life and meaning to those who live inside and around them. They teach us what can be achieved and how to go about it. And it is high time everyone learned that.
*Actually, it was Steven Coverdale, bless him, who found this one.