Friday, September 26, 2008

41, My inspiration.

Having had a great love of architecture and history from an early age I was always captivated by the older buildings dotted around our region, generally constructed from the mid to late nineteenth century, the era of major settlement into rural Victoria. I was mostly fascinated by the asymmetrical constructions more Gothic in style, with the plethora of geometric shapes and all the nooks and cranny's, but when it came to the design of my own house I opted for the more formal and proportioned look with Italianate features.
I am amassing a large number of photographs of buildings that I personally find architecturally significant. From this I have selected a small number shown here that are relevant to my own house.

Ingleby Homestead, between Winchelsea and Birregurra is very typical of the mid Victorian style homesteads found scattered throughout western Victoria, double piled, three bays wide and very symmetrical in appearance.
It was the stately formality of this style of house that was my main motivation when designing my own home.

For the type of quoining I selected, one of my main influences was "Point Wilson homestead", located on Port Phillip bay, south of Laverton. A pale green sandstone, from a source that I have yet been unable to identify, was used very attractively to contrast with the bluestone used on this house.

Another early influence was at "Wiridgil", a rambling bluestone house near Camperdown, where the quoining was rendered over the stonework.

"Narrapumelap" another bluestone house near Wickliffe in Western Victoria, was also very interesting, with what appeared to be limestone, used for the quoining and carved into very decorative arches.

St Georges Presbyterian manse in Geelong, Built of local "fine" bluestone and Barrabool sandstone dressings in about 1865. This is my favourite building in the local region and includes many interesting details, it was the main inspiration for the coursing and details on my own house. The random stonework includes many courses of multiple blocks of matching heights giving a more formal look with elongated horizontal joints, the style which I selected. Another feature that I adopted was the relieving segmental and horizontal arches above the window lintels.
Unfortunately, for many buildings in the Geelong area, the passage of time has proved the poor durability of much of the quarried Barrabool sandstone. On exposure to the elements it tends to de-laminate and erode, as can be seen, particularly in the plinth and string courses. Having this hindsight I was able to avoid its use, opting for the readily available Mt. Gambier Limestone. This is a stone that is almost identical to one previously extracted from the nearby Moorabool river valley, which was mainly quarried for the production of portand cement and was only available for building in very limited quantities.

The Uniting church, South Geelong, built from local bluestone and the aforementioned Limestone.

Another church in Western Victoria, using a different limestone for the quoining. The exact location of this I am currently unable to identify with the picture taken on a family trip to South Australia.

A very inspiring house on Victoria Parade, Melbourne. I plan to construct the verandah on my own house to a similar design, with the gabled centre section protruding forward of the main structure.

Another grand house, Monivae, on the Port Fairy Rd. Hamilton. It features a similar style of verandah and has some impressive features, such as the intricate post plinths, but lacks a lot the finer, more delicate detailing.

The Gatehouse for "Werribee Park". With its neat stonework it is much more appealing to me than the mansion itself.

An interesting old church hall at Beeac, now a private residence. It is down the road from and using the same stone as the demolished church, from which I procured the bluestone.

A lovely double piled house on Kilgour St, Geelong. The Barrabool sandstone appearing to be well preserved, protected under the verandah.

And finally, the beautiful "Albert Hall", on the beachfront at Glenlelg, Adelaide, South Australia. It captivated my imagination with its exquisite detailing and form.

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