Some of the most adventurous contemporary homes can be seen from a mile away. Others are concealed behind high brick fences. Hawthorn contains many contemporary homes, with some of the most edgy designs tucked behind turrets and pitched gabled rooflines. In one case, a period home extended by Jackson Clements Burrows occupies a prominent corner site, with both the past and the present coming together.

1. Architect Robert Simeoni

Location: Myrtle Street, Hawthorn

Located near the edge of an escarpment in West Hawthorn, this almost entirely brick house responds to the slope of the site, falling away significantly to the rear. As a consequence, the charcoal-coloured brick home appears two-storey from the street, while in reality containing an additional level behind. Rather than ‘standing apart’, this house has a special relationship to the garden, with a forecourt and entry sequence, together with a series of steel outdoor brick lintels, appearing as almost a medieval ruin in the landscape. “The house has quite a heavy base, but lightens as one ascends, with the glazed top level capturing city views,” says Simeoni.

2. ADDARC

Location: 34 Barton Street, Hawthorn

This adventurous new house by ADDARC slows traffic with its reflective façade. Revealing a dark and moody interior that is expressed over three levels, it has become a landmark in the heritage streetscape. The zinc used to clad the roof and façade is also expressed within the home’s interior, wrapping around built-in joinery at the entrance. Black granite walls and ‘floating’ granite-clad stairs add to the interior’s minimal and recessive palette of materials. A fluorescent installation by artist Rowena Martinich illuminates the living areas, as does the northern light which enters via the generous glazing.

3. Jackson Clements Burrows (JCB) Architects

Location: 2 Goodall Street, Hawthorn

This prominent corner site (corner Goodall and Urquart Streets) features the best of both worlds; a fine red brick Edwardian house and a contemporary extension by JCB Architects. The extension is relatively simple in form, compared to the ornate detailing of the period home. However, the detail on the contemporary side includes a base of glazed charcoal bricks, while timber clads the first floor, including timber shutters with perforations to allow for natural light and ventilation. As the colour and material palette for the new wing is dark and recessive, the form is crisp and strong.

4. Dale Jones Evans

Location: 23 Morang Road, Hawthorn

Designed by Dale Jones Evans in 1989, this unusual house can’t be missed, either from Morang Road or from Power Street (with rear access). The home’s distinctive zinc-clad tiled roof was a talking point at the time, as were the home’s series of moats and cantilevered first floor spaces, some with ‘viewing’ platforms to the water below. Traditional corridors were replaced with bridge-like walkways. Not surprisingly, this house received numerous awards, including a Robin Boyd Award from the Australian Institute of Architects, when it was first ‘unveiled’.

5. B.E Architecture

Location: 77A Kooyongkoot Road, Hawthorn

This ‘graphic’ house by B.E Architecture combines natural grey renders with black aluminium detailing. The home’s clean rectilinear forms, expressed over three levels, show what can be achieved with fewer and sharper ‘brushstrokes’. Double-height spaces, including a dramatic void over the entry, are a feature together with fluid open plan spaces within the home. “The black aluminium detailing is expressed in most rooms, even in the kitchen,” says architect Andrew Piva, a director of the practice.

Text by Stephen Crafti
Photo courtesy of ADDARC

ADDARC - 34 Barton Street, Hawthorn


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