Outtakes: A favourite recent house

One of our favourite houses we've recently featured in our pages is a 1954 gem in Hamilton by architect Peter Middleton. It was the city's first architect-designed modernist house, a brave experiment in open-plan living. Heather Lomas, who with her husband Alan, commissioned Middleton to design the house, still lives there, and can therefore attest to the longevity of his design. All these photographs were taken by Paul McCredie. Here, Heather opens the door separating the living room from the kitchen and dining area, a device Middleton created in order to separate children and adults when necessary.

An elegant stone fireplace separates the living area from the library, up a couple of steps.
The image below shows the cedar-lined bedroom with a view out to the garden, which runs down to Lake Rotoroa. The shot below that shows the view of the house from the garden.

And the image below shows Heather herself sitting outside her house. After we sent her a copy of the magazine with her home in it, she sent us a lovely letter. Our favourite quote: "Paul McCredie's ruthless elimination of much of the clutter in the house for the photographs certainly paid off - they are excellent". (We should add that Paul is indeed one of our most skilled declutterers). Heather added that she was sorry that Peter Middleton is no longer alive to enjoy the appreciation of this house. We agree, but we also think it's a testament to his talent that his work has dated so beautifully, as enjoyable now as it was when it was first designed.

We like... Headspace 1

Earlier this year, students studying the Bachelor of Environments at the University of Melbourne took part in a project called Headspace 1 as part of their degree. Each student was asked to take an idea from within their head and literally place it on the outside. Students re-created their ideas with paper, in a form of headwear. The sculptural like results are awesome!

My Favourite Building: Andrew Drummond

Christchuch sculptor Andrew Drummond's favourite building is a gem by mid-century master Ernst Plischke. The photograph is by Stephen Goodenough.

Andrew: "When I first came to Christchurch I drove past this church and thought, 'Wow, what’s that?' I thought Christchurch was lucky to have a Plischke church. There is some grand and extraordinary church architecture here, but I like St Martin’s, this Presbyterian church which is just around the corner from my home. When you walk in, you know you’re going into a very special space. It’s austere, but it has beautiful proportions and light coming through the coloured glass – a reference, I think, to Le Corbusier’s Ronchamp, which does a similar thing. This church is more formal, but it’s just gorgeous."

The church is at 43 St Martin's Road, Christchurch.

We like: Sunday Painters restaurant

You just can't help but love Sunday Painters restaurant in Auckland's Ponsonby, which featured in our October issue. It opened earlier this year, complete with a whimsical interior that features a mural by James Kirkwood, one of the restaurant's owners. (We should add at this point that the French-style food is very good, too, as is the service).

The name Sunday Painters comes from the occasional dinners James and his co-owners Esther Lamb and Isobel Thom liked to throw for their art-school friends in RSA Halls around Auckland. The old halls didn't allow for decorative schemes as lavish as this.

Among the Cubist artworks on the walls are these plates, made and hand-painted by Isobel, an artist who also runs the Sunday Painters kitchen. We've always been suckers for a bit of Willow pattern, and think Isobel's take on it is fantastic.

The restaurant is at 185 Ponsonby Road - we highly recommend you visit, but book beforehand as it has been very popular. The number is 09 360 2001. These photographs are by Patrick Reynolds.

We like: Home Work (subscribe to HOME and get a free copy)

We like Home Work, a new book that invites readers inside the homes of twenty New Zealand architects - the rules being that the architects must have designed their homes themselves and still be living in them.

It's a fantastically eclectic selection of houses, from 1950s classics to contemporary extravaganzas such as Neville Price's Northland home on the cover. (We've run an excerpt from the book about Tony Watkins' house at Auckland's Karaka Bay in our current issue).

The photographs, we're proud to say, are by HOME New Zealand contributor Patrick Reynolds, with erudite text and informative interviews with the architects by John Walsh, editor of Architecture NZ.

The good news is that if you subscribe now (or renew your subscription) to HOME New Zealand, you'll get a copy of Home Work (worth $75) absolutely free. You can do so by visiting www.magshop.co.nz/home. An ideal Christmas gift, we suggest? You can give somebody a subscription and keep Home Work for yourself...

We like: Federal & Wolfe cafe

One of our favourite new Auckland cafes is Federal & Wolfe, which features in the 'Greenhome' section of our current issue. We like their focus on organic produce and the 'gate to plate' philosophy of the menu of chef Holly Shaw (below left, pictured with Johnny Potiki Hartnett and Jeremy Turner in a photograph by Todd Eyre).

As well as the food, we like Federal & Wolfe's easy-going approach to interiors, which involved ripping out some of the old fittings of the previous occupant (a restaurant named Rice) and replacing them with a very casual mixture of trestles, benches and old chairs. Those in the food biz will also know Jeremy Turner as the co-owner of Parnell's Cibo restaurant, a job he's still doing along with overseeing Federal & Wolfe.

Federal & Wolfe is, as the name suggests, on the corner of Federal & Wolfe Streets (one block back from the lower end of Albert Street in the central city). It is open weekdays from 7am to 3pm, and NOT weekends as our article erroneously states (for which we offer our apologies).

Our Favourite Building: Chris Adams and Bianca Pohio

In every issue of our magazine, we devote the back page to a feature that invites architects (and regular folk) to choose their favourite buildings. Over the coming weeks we'll be posting some of these. First up, architects Chris Adams and Bianca Pohio, who divide their time between Auckland and Sydney. They like the idea of Auckland's old works depot becoming a place for art. The photograph is by Todd Eyre.

Chris: "These buildings were designed in the mid-1960s by George Kenny under Tibor Donner, Auckland’s City Architect. All the heroic core buildings in Auckland – the City Council building, the Ellen Melville Hall and the Parnell Baths – were built in this period. This one reminds us of New York’s DIA Beacon, an old factory that’s now an art gallery."
Bianca: "This is a perfect building to be a gallery. I hadn’t noticed it until I came to Deus ex Machina, the cafĂ© here. It is beautifully constructed with its steel and in-situ concrete, and amazing natural light. There’s been a sense that New Zealand is a young country so you can just bowl things and build again. These buildings should be preserved to value the wonderful architecture of the era."

You can easily visit the buildings if you wish - as Bianca mentions, Shed Five cafe (also known as Deus ex Machina) is in one of them, at 90 Wellesley Street. At the moment, the area is planned to be developed as the Rhubarb Lane residential quarter. The first stage of the Rhubarb Lane development will be built in the lower part of the depot, so the sheds behind Chris and Bianca will be demolished to make way for a park space for the area. Shed Five, however, will remain in place, although its long-term future is less certain.

Our new cover

The cover of our December/January 2011 issue, which will be on newsstands on November 22, features of a photograph by Patrick Reynolds of a house by Julian Guthrie at Omaha, north of Auckland. This is our annual issue featuring coastal homes, so we wanted a cover that shouted 'summer!'. Hopefully this does the trick. Thanks to Julian for letting us know about this excellent house, for the Couillault family for being so helpful with our shoot, and of course to Patrick for the great shot.

Incoming: at Douglas + Bec

We are looking forward to the arrival of these new chairs to the Douglas + Bec store. The WSC stacking chair was launched at Milan this year by Well-Groomed-Fox. Also pleased to report the new matte white + matte black versions of the much loved angle lamp 2.0 by Workroom design are in store now.

We like: Matthias Heiderich photography

A new find and favourite is the work of German photographer Matthias Heiderich... great combination of simplicity and colour.

found via swiss miss

more of Matthias Heiderich's portfolio can be found at the Behance Network

We like: Brian Brake's book

One of our favourite Christmas gift ideas this year is a new book from Te Papa Press featuring the work of the late photographer Brian Brake.

Brake explored the world as a star contributor to LIFE, National Geographic, Paris Match and other publications in the golden age of photo magazines from the 1950 (his 'Monsoon' series, an image from which is featured below, became perhaps his best-known works); later, his images showed New Zealanders a dazzling, cinematic version of their country. His world-wide success (including his acceptance into the renowned Magnum agency) made him a household name at home, and to some extent, a tall poppy. The book has an accompanying exhibition is at Te Papa that runs until May 8, 2011.
Our only (very minor) quibble with the book is that it doesn't show images of Brake's very well-known house in the bush in west Auckland, designed by architect Ron Sang. We were lucky enough to have our Home of the Decade award announcement at the house in 2005. It's a magical box that appears to float over the surrounding greenery while the city glimmers in the distance. Its owners at the time had great respect for the home's pedigree, and had kept it in impeccable condition (they have since sold the house to new owners).

These photographs of the house were taken by Becky Nunes. The view here is from the home's tatami room, looking over the magnolia branches to the main deck and living area. It's a significant New Zealand house and was a homecoming of sorts for Brake, as it was the place he settled back in New Zealand after many years abroad.

Come and work with us!

The lovely Caroline Daniel, our direct advertising sales manager, is (unfortunately) leaving us, so we're looking for a replacement. The direct sales manager is in charge of selling advertising space to advertisers such as furniture retailers and other building and design industry people who don't use an advertising agency to make their bookings.

If this is something you might be interested in, please check out the link below. We're nice to work with, we really are!

Here's the link:

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