Friday, October 17, 2014

Mid Century Modern

Did a long walk to North Melbourne Station then a trip into the city to see the Mid Century Modern Australian Furniture Design.
I arrived at the Gallery just in time to join a tour of this exhibition that closes this weekend.
The exhibition followed the development of Australian designers in the post war period utilizing available materials like Parachute harness belting and ply from Aeroplanes .

Fred Ward designed the DC1 chair for the company that was to become FLER, Fred Lowen & Ernest Rodeck had their own workshop. Fler received an order of 500 chairs form Myer for £2/10,  a boon for the developing company.
Born in Germany in 1919 Fred escaped to Belgium in 1938 after Crystal Night. He entered England in 1940 via the Dunkirk evacuation and was interned and transported in 'true convict style' on the Dunera to Australia where he was interned in Hay and Tatura.
The FLER chair we all know
In 1942 Fred was reclassified as a 'friendly' enemy alien and was released for work as a fitter and turner. By 1945 he had started a small business as a wood turner selling salad bowls, platters and other items to gift shops along with Ernest who he met in the Camp.  see Ernest on the Zone
 Also Chairs
and also lowen 
(spent ages reading all this stuff as I checked some facts!)
The other Designer was Clement Meadmore whose stuff looks wonderful but he wants to be remembered for his sculpture not his furniture.
His sculpture
His chairs
The greatest designer in Melbourne was Grant Featherston (and later with his wife Mary)  (1922-1995) was born in Geelong being self-taught, he designed lighting and glass panels before serving in the army from 1940-1944. Returning to Melbourne he produced the first of his famous plywood shell Contour chairs in 1951.  Featherston Contract Interiors furniture showroom opened in 1956, and in 1957 he became a consultant to Aristoc Industries for 13 years. 
replicas now sell for over $1000
The moulded chair
Major projects included the furnishing of the National Gallery of Victoria, the Children's Museum of Victoria and Research into Play/Learning Environments for children.
His relaxation Range made of webbing was comfortable cheap and popular Maybe not se cheap as it cost £5 when the basic weekly wage was  £9.
 His other chairs were the precurser of Ikea Flat Packs being sold for assembly with an Ad of a women in an apron armed with hammer to show how easy it is. 
I have heard that many men are chagrined to find the help centre for Ikea assembly is a woman!
A cabinet with Ramekins by Martin Boyd like we had
It as a very nostalgic tour realising Maddy and Dad were very up on the trends with lost of Home Beautiful being the magazine for the modern home owner.!

1967 ‘EXPO’ ‘Talking Chair’ Commissioned by Robin Boyd for the Australian Pavilion, Expo ’67, Montreal, Canada. Manufacturer: Danish de Luxe & Aristoc Industries, Melbourne
This was the hit of the exhibition with a recording triggered as you sat, of Australian stars (Googoe Withers being one ) talking about the country and its fauna of Australia.  The queue was so long they cut the audio short to speed people on!

The Delma Chair was a surprise. I am sure every Australian has sat in one!
And the final surprise The patent for the Stackable Plastic chair . Production moved to the US but was from Featherston stable.

Other treats on show!
The glass top desk Identical from both sides, actually pivots

Some of the younger audience had Chenille explained

Friday, October 10, 2014

Industrial design

I really like the industrial trend in modern architecture and design .Not that I will have any scope for that in our new modern pad.
But as I was walking to North Melbourne station I was walking down McLaurens street where there are lots of industry, trucks and mills etc.
An apartment block at the less industrial end
Lovely old brick buildings




A demolition and cliff face behind
Great pattern of cranes
Banksia Rose thriving on industrial fencing
This is a recycled timber place Obviously using their products!
Corrugated iron building

Bushido: The way of the Warrior

Decided to go to the national gallery to see this Japanese exhibition of Bushido, about Samurai.
Probably thinking I saw enough in Japan, but No!  endless interest!
The entrance to the room was painted Vermillion like a Tori (gate)
The exhibit was of Samurai Suits of Armour, swords, wood block prints,(of Yoshitsune-- that will mean something to Celia) and Screens.
The main suit was purchased by the NGV in 1889 but never had it on display! It dates from the Edo period 1600-1868 It is a suit of 'modern' style of the 11th and 12 century.

It must have been a sight to still the heart, as he came thundering towards you on horseback.
The detail and beauty of the patterns formed is amazing.
there was a great iPad App that gave you detail and close up of the whole suit.

As well a display of sword guards, Iron wrought with design and carving.
Also on an iPad that gave you details of each one.
The screen and this bow and arrow were beautiful in their detail

Can you guess what this is ??
A Fireman's cape and Helmet. Ceremonial I presume!
Other things on display were a lovely collection of Inro and Netsuke.Consisting of a stack of tiny, nested boxes, inrō were most commonly used to carry identity seals and medicine. The stack of boxes is held together by a cord that is laced through cord runners down one side, under the bottom, and up the opposite side. The ends of the cord are secured to a netsuke ,a kind of toggle that is passed between the sash and pants and then hooked over the top of the sash to suspend the inrō.



these are works of art and the Variety and detail of Netsuke are a collection in them selves.
 I was present with one of the 8 school groups I saw so gained some information from the Gallery guide's talk.

A wonderful helmet
An undergarment with family crest embroidered

The Sale

A rather late entry but we are still at Footscray till 13th November
I approached an Agent that Andrew had referred me to and Dean Johnson and Summer were the agents that I dealt with from Sweeney. They were great and impressed with my styling of the house.
I had at first thought 'styling' was a wank, but after seeing some places on line (one obviously tenanted, with shopping on the counter, dishes in the sink and wet washing draped over the bath taps) So i went all out, even, on Andrew's suggestion, setting up a TV in the back sun room, as buyers would want to see where they can watch TV. I feel I should warn them when they do a final inspection that they need to organise an aerial  and cable. (when we did have TV it was just plugged in with a flat ribbon cord to the antenna )
The Bungalow was transformed.
 Pity Celia didn't get to use the craft room that  I worked on so hard last Summer!
All she will see next month is a barren space
I set this room up as an office
And this as a bedroom
My Bedroom has never looked so neat and tidy! And Celia's looked quite spacious!!

The bathroom never looked so good and the lounge looked great

This is with Spencer's cushion and my slipper (removed for inspections)
The Garden looked as  good as it is!
I replaced some plants from the Fallen Pom pom tree

planted some veges that had taken off by open days

At the auction 2 people were sitting here drinking coffee and eating a banana!
Had the paving cleaned as well