‘Reade House’ 14 Lorraine Dve, Briar Hill VIC

One frenzy over, another begins.
Charles Duncan’s work (always a firm fav with you all) has revealed itself once more with an absolute pearler new to market. According to Steven at MCDA the origin story tells of a family in 1966 with a limited budget but desiring eye for Modern architecture (sound familiar?) having watched with interest the build of Charles Duncan’s Williams House in Eaglemont (which we listed only last year). Though they assumed the architect wouldn’t bother with the small commission they had in mind, they approached him nonetheless. Fortunately he did take it on and here is the result; a (now) 3 bedroom home with the home office of dreams (added by Duncan again at some later date) in his trademark hefty forms, earthy materials and wonderful spaces in one of the best examples we’ve seen yet. With a parade of extra brownie points; excellent condition, large bushland garden, pool and the wonderful idiosyncratic details which make architect designed homes just that bit more magical; inbuilt child’s bunks, joinery and gorgeous minimal fireplace this one, in these dry summer conditions, is sure to start a wildfire. 

4 Berry Crt, Highton VIC

Playing catchup with our listings backlog and sorry to advise but this one has just been snared, rightly so with such elegant architectural lines*, potential for restoration and ample yardage it’s all a bit too enticing for $500k. Once again we have another example of wonderfully conceived and built Modernist domesticity popping up in an unassuming regional suburb. 

*Thanks to Steven Coverdale at MCDA for clearing that up – this is a project home design for Merchant Builders called ‘The Patio Home’ (c.1970) from the lauded architect Charles Duncan

66A Molesworth St, Kew VIC

Phhhwoooaarrrr! Keeping the continuum going with yet another knockout home we’ve listed before is today’s Charles Duncan landmark in the Melbourne Mecca of high-end Modernist Australian homes, Studley Park. Out-schooling those Sydney Schoolers with it’s Wrightian horizontal heft and crunchy berry goodness, this impressive residence is one for the ages, with that swapped around lounge room furniture (see – old and new listings) making nary an impact on the overall magnificence of architectural vision. Duncan, as you may know, is up there with the MA essential legends bearing a legacy of revered work, both public and private, some of which has heritage listing and others acting as celebrated venues for MCM events, and it’s fair to say that this particular residence is a stand-out even in that formidable list. As an aside, would we dare suggest that such iconic, finely crafted, MCM goodness in beautiful condition, 3 kms for the CBD is a bargain at 2.2 millions dollars? I think we will, though still most certainly in the realm of impossible dream for us normies. QuickPicks incoming.

‘Williams House’ 4 Glenard Dve, Eaglemont VIC

It’s always a pleasure when a home recognised with heritage listing pops up on our radar. This bush-baby stunner has been setting hearts afire over the weekend and with good cause, as the work of renowned Melbourne Mid-Century architect Charles Duncan. Duncan graduated RMIT in 1959 and worked within two other legendary firms; Chancellor & Patrick and McGlashan Everist before quickly striking out on his own in the early 60s from which he preceded to create his legacy of outstanding Modernist residences, not least this one, which won the Victorian Architecture Medal for the RAIA’s Best House Of The Year in 1965. Sitting snug in the bosom of Walter Burley Griffin’s pre-Canberra and Castlecrag planning dream – the Glenard Estate – the sloping landscaped grounds and residence we find here exude a textural, organic cosiness of materials dovetailing with the straight lines, spaces and levels of peak 1960s Modernist sophistication, an impeccably enticing combination all round.

4/30 Lisson Gv, Hawthorn VIC

This 1971 townhouse, the largest in a quartet designed by the notable Australian Modernist Charles Duncan (not to be confused with Kenneth Charles Duncan) may look familiar. The honesty of earthy materials and low slung, horizontal line belies the creator’s Lloyd Wright influence was also apparent in another home by Duncan sold last year (which we neglected to post up ourselves tsk tsk). Unlike that large house in the outer east hills, this one sits in a primo city spot and is a true representation of later wave MCM homes a private oasis of warmth, comfort and light. Well loved and meticulously presented by it’s current owners it now seeks a new custodian who really just needs to move in, kick back and enjoy it’s beautiful spaces. Extra props for the bedroom bulkhead lighting – an increasingly rare, yet superb interior element and just one of many to be seen here.