Next up and all original 1960s, flat-roofed, salt spray eyrie. Sitting high amid the tea-tree scrub, with interiors a little above the standard for such homes – beautiful timber lined walls, cork flooring and that stacked fireplace. Fate alone will dictate what happens here, but lets enjoy such simple, verging on boho, beauty while it stands.
For those of you just killing time till the end of the week, others just barely limping to the finish line of 2017 or perhaps seeking 2 minutes respite from the consumerist death-races, today is a mini-bonanza of listings under the guise of a MCM beach shack exploration. A study of one particular location which has only seen the real estate push over the last couple of years and as such still maintains a variety of original homes which we’d deem as worthy for a listing here – from your straight up old timers, to the renovated Air BnB specials. Come let’s away………
The first is a success story. Obviously a once large block has been subdivided, but the owners have thankfully seen fit to keep the original 50s/60s board house with its integral summer vibe (townhouse development begone!) and modest footprint and go full instapic zsoosh on it. The results are elegant, a little fancy but nonetheless a great little example of how old, can become new, can become mass-appeal hott as they come.
Many thanks to Steven Coverdale over at MCDA for turning up this unmitigated gem. A project home design called the ‘ME2’ by, you guessed it – that kitchen is a dead giveaway – the firm of McGlashan Everist from their golden period of the late1960s. Drawing together their architectural traits and stalwart materials common to their commission work – raw brick, elegant timber ceilings and pragmatic floorplans to ensure optimal light, airflow and parental respite (master bedroom one end – kids at the other – win!) this unmolested wonder makes serenity of space and movement amid everyday family bustle a reality, a feat rarely achieved in even contemporary builds (remember this is nigh on 50 years old). It leaves naught to do but break out the Toto in exultation.
Like a sullen teenage Kate Moss sitting in an airport lounge, it only has to take one person with a good eye and chutzpah to take them aside and turn them into a supermodel. This little cutie pie has everything in place to become a loved MCM abode of true 60s beauty, including, if warranted, a little sympathetic extension out back. Indeed t’would be an offence to see such good bones go to ruin. Anyone?
Slightly underwhelming on the inside – though that master bedroom patio combo is rather dreamy – the outside well and truely makes up for it, what a stunner!* And with a roomy three bedrooms you could, in time, chuck that colonised kitchen, swish it up a tad and you’ll have set yourself up beautifully in primo Hobart town.
*Architect – Frank Stary
A number of you have alerted us to this lovely residence, a warm brick and beamer by everyone’s favourite non-architect, Alistair Knox and only one of three apparently in this suburb (which is usually the locale for earlier era MCM gems rather than bushland babies like this) and of these messages has stood out – from Emma, who grew up here and like so many of you out there has parent’s farewelling the long-held family and does not want to see it fall, as she writes;
“My parents have listed this house, which they bought off the original owner (the brother of Peter Jackson, of suit fame) 20 years ago. This house has so much scope with beautiful bones. 7 children grew up in the 3 bedroom house (the 5 boys had the large bedroom at the end), and the backyard was used to learn to drive………….We really want the house to be saved from the wrecking ball…”
(Who doesn’t love a little local celebrity colour!) But we need to act fast – this home goes for auction tomorrow, we sincerely hope there may indeed be a new family waiting in the wings already, ready to pounce and Knox it up for another few decades.
Some ripper aspects to this endangered Brighton beaut – the landscaping, bbq configuration complete with copper hood, internal timber detailing, northern orientation and epic design comprising walls of glazing and masonry but the one feature that truly elevates this home is the internal courtyard. Letting in light and providing an architectural focus to an entire floor plan, internal courtyards are guaranteed to add a certain Modernist je ne sais quoi to any residence and are one of those precious items on many a MCM home wish-list which rarely gets a tick.
**Update** thanks to Simon Reeves – this home was from the architectural offices of Bernard Evans, military man, Mayor of Melbourne (for 2 terms) architect and head of one of the the biggest architectural firms in Mid-Century Victoria. Now that, my friends is a list of accomplishments!
A wild ride in the illustrious MCM riverside hills of Studley Park. Some new alterations, some old, some things to change and many things to strip back and enhance. Make Mid-Century Great Again.
**Update** Flying under the radar this is actually the work of MA luminary Anatol Kagan (thanks Simon Reeves) and was a commission for Charles Stradwick, completed in (c.1956) Some primo MCM pedigree right there!
Yesterday, 12 kms north of Brissy central, a mis-named MCM ripper. Today the same. 12kms South this time. A Jindalee jamboree of MCM sophistication and more than a touch of sleek, So-Cal swing. Those agents showing themselves up as for the rubes they are by declaring it an ‘ugly duckling’. But on second thought, perhaps in a Hollywood sense they are correct, for it only takes a mere removal of the glasses and shaking out of the hair to reveal to those with a myopically conventional grasp of ‘beauty’ what is actually standing right in front of them. For the rest of us well, I dare say a few last minute, Friday arvo calls to the bank is on the cards.
Aido, mate, love the enthusiasm but if you think this is a California Bungalow then you may need the fire up the Googs. For what in fact you have on your hands here is a damn resplendent example of Australian suburban, architect designed, possibly project home, Mid-Century Modernism. In the tradition of your Pettit & Sevitts or Fasham Johnsons. Reckon you might wanna change up that title because, as much as CB’s have their fans, they ain’t nuthin’ on the increasing crowd of rabid MCM cultists whose fires we (and many other social pages) stoke on a daily basis. You wanna have people falling over themselves for that elegant, low-slung frontage? That gorgeous entry? The genius simplicity of spaces, beams and natural texture palette? Then recalibrate that pitch a tad and let’s see what happens.
A hectic tsunami of the spring real estate market and parade of incredible home after MCM home has finally receded, leaving the Christmastime detritus of run-down projects like this sweetie and dear beach town shacks. Both we’ll be showcasing for a while – hopefully winding you down to a summer letting-go, an escape from the the rush and bumble, edging you closer to more earthly delights of food, drink, friends, family and weather. But we digress. This little place of course is on the ropes, and no amount of amenity to bus stops and pokies venues disguised as a good night out are really selling it to us. What is calling us however is the beautiful elevations, vertical timber and brick, that classic cement patio, stone fireplace, kitchen and the dreams of possibility. And at $215k, you may indeed have enough leftover to see this possibility become reality.
This is the kind of home we’d love to inhabit if only to overtly boho around in. A barefoot and bongos, Falkner and free-association, carport, candle and card-games dwelling complete with compact kitchen, California beach awning, tangerine carpet (thought we might lose that iron lacework in the inside) and modest footprint in one of the most exclusive suburbs in the entire country. The kind of residence noted by the neighbours for proudly proclaiming “yeah we could have some bloated villa here with far too many rooms and a servant class to clean them, but we know we don’t need that.” Opting out – right in all yer faces, you dig?
PS – Massive props to Patrick, dear fellow, how kind of you to not put out the welcome mat for the bulldozer – the owners searching for a dedicated Modernist to take over perhaps?
Like a finely carved, Prussian blue, gold filagreed grenade lobbed across the country, Perth reminds us once more that they are home to one of the most outlandishly exotic, Eastern Euro architects in the history of Australian Modernism, (perhaps only Holgar and Holgar in Melbourne can compare) as Iwan Iwanoff’s ‘Madaschi House’ (c.1970) is now on the market. One of a small collection of highly prized, statement residences which (rather uniquely) manages to capture the imaginations of cashed up mansion seekers, Mid-Century architecture nerds and those in between and is perhaps the reason they remain standing, well preserved and now celebrated, when so many more understated works of Australian Modernist architects (even Iwanoff himself) have found their fate at the wreckers ball. This wild ride, though palatial in its decor and spaces (sunken lounge rooms – is there really anything better?) it is far from it in layout – a mere run-of-the-mill 2-3 bed, 2 bathroom job which is nigh on perfect for today’s smaller household requirements whilst steadfastly not giving an inch in the glamour stakes. Perfect all round for those of a certain bravado, including of the Perth’s ‘arrived creative class’ as the blurb likes tell us – tee hee! Speaking of the official listing, our only gripe in this case is the janky photos – geeze guys, way to drop a sitter. This landmark deserves better.
Is this being under-quoted? For although the poor love requires major internal surgery, the bones, the street facade, the unbeatable northern orientation, the potential to extend out back, the glorious quiet street, river parkland down the hill and the posho G-town suburb name all remain intact. With places on the northern fringe and round the corner going for a fair wack these days, we expect some stiff competition for this one too. Our recommendation for those keen is to get on it ASAP!
It’s all a bit topsy turvy when the room in best condition in a house is the bathroom, but this certainly no ordinary place with more than it’s fair share of mad hatter vibes (must be that wall paper). Though needing a little love there is a world of potential to harness – including stonework, built in furniture, carport and main room configuration, overgrown garden and Easter Island face wood burner (haven’t we seen you before old friend?).
A subtle street presence. Cared and lived in, in a manner which itself demands our admiration for such negligible wear and tear, whilst still evoking instant welcome, warmth and ease. An epic front door. Solid, unyielding brickwork and tiles. A stylishly daring kitchen. Windows everywhere letting the light flood in. Talismans of cultured European owners. A no-nonsense floor plan. A backyard just aching for a tiny zhush of festoon lights (or maybe a pool?) to make it sublime. Everything one comes to expect from a certified Caulfield North classic. *sigh*
Its always super exciting to post up the opportunity to live in a bona fide amazeballs Mid-Century home, this one right on the river with an immaculate timber and painted brick schema and a distinct Japanese design influence, without the million dollar price tag. That’s rental living for you, in this case you get the very best of the west, without having mining magnate on your CV. Diggit!
Hold the phone! An awe-inspiring, chest-bursting residence from the hand of notable, Hungarian emigre architect Frank Kolos (just the fellow to be celebrated with his colleagues in the recent exhibition from the Sydney Museum ‘The Moderns’) has popped up for sale. And could there be a greater testament to the ideas and execution on Mid-Century Modern design than this? Around 60 years old and as fresh, attractive and responsive to today’s needs as any contemporary build going on (and, lets face it a hellava lot more beautiful than most). How many other examples in the field of design – appliances, cars, clothing or tech could stand up to that comparison. Yep, not many. Of course another plus with a 60 year old home is the 60 year old garden to go with it – that stunning sweep of a drive leading us up to this beauty, nestled amid towering trees. We dare anyone to look at this a not see it as a work of art, and we will be questioning mankind en masse should it not be standing this time next year – Sydneysiders, a sure one for heritage protection no?