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Our book of marvellous mid-century homes

Article by Home Magazine

UPDATE We’re very pleased to announce that our book Modern: New Zealand Homes from 1938 to 1977 won the Gerard Reid Award for Best Book at the recent Publishers’ Association of New Zealand Book Design Awards. It also won the categories of Best Illustrated Book and Best Typography. Congratulations to Arch MacDonnell and Sarah Gladwell of Inhouse Design (who also design every issue of HOME) for their beautiful work on the book.

We’re delighted to introduce you to our book, Modern: New Zealand Homes from 1938 to 1977, a tribute to the innovation and bravery of modernist architects of the era. It was published in October 2013 by Random House.

The book features a 1960s Raumati home by Reginald Uren on its cover, photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

The book features a 1960s Raumati home by Reginald Uren on its cover, photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

The book has a linen cover under the jacket, which we think is rather fetching.

The book has a linen cover under the jacket, which we think is rather fetching.

 

The book features wonderful modernist homes from Auckland, Hamilton, Hawke’s Bay, Whanganui, the Kapiti Coast, Wellington, Christchurch, Alexandra and Dunedin. Many of them have been published in HOME in the last decade or so, and are collected together here along with some homes being featured for the first time.

The book was designed by Arch Macdonnell and Sarah Gladwell of Inhouse Design, who also design each issue of HOME.

The book was designed by Arch Macdonnell and Sarah Gladwell of Inhouse Design, who also design each issue of HOME.

The Wilson House in Whanganui, one of the homes in our book photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Wilson House in Whanganui, one of the homes in our book photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Halberstam House in Wellington was designed in 1945 by Henry Kulka and is featured in the book. It was photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Halberstam House in Wellington was designed in 1945 by Henry Kulka and is featured in the book. It was photographed by Paul McCredie.

 

Modernism was a global revolution in architecture that changed the way we live, and the homes show the way this international style was imported to New Zealand. The country’s housing stock was previously dominated by English-style housing such as villas and cottages that paid no attention to fundamental design issues such as orientation to the sun, and relegated domestic functions such as cooking and laundry to rudimentary lean-tos. Modernist homes often featured open-plan living spaces oriented to the sun. They also elevated the importance of domestic function and family life. They also used beautiful materials that, in most of the homes in the book, still look fantastic today.

The Donner House in Auckland was designed by Tibor Donner in the late 1930s. Photograph by Mark Smith.

The Donner House in Auckland was designed by Tibor Donner in the late 1930s. Photograph by Mark Smith.

The Cedars in the Auckland suburb of Glendowie was designed by architect Ivan Juriss. These shots in the book were photographed by Simon Devitt and styled by Katie Lockhart.

The Cedars in the Auckland suburb of Glendowie was designed by architect Ivan Juriss. These shots in the book were photographed by Simon Devitt and styled by Katie Lockhart.

The Uren House in Raumati, designed by Reginald Uren in the late 1960s, was photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

The Uren House in Raumati, designed by Reginald Uren in the late 1960s, was photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

The open-plan living room (left) and the garden of the Uren House in Raumati, photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

The open-plan living room (left) and the garden of the Uren House in Raumati, photographed by Patrick Reynolds.

 

Through its look at 24 modernist homes, the book traces the development of modernism from a pure international style to one that collided with the New Zealand vernacular, as architects experimented with open-plan living spaces under cottage-style roofs.

The Craig House in Pinehaven, Wellington, was designed by Jon Craig in the late 1960s and photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Craig House in Pinehaven, Wellington, was designed by Jon Craig in the late 1960s and photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Foster House in Havelock North was designed by Miles Warren of Warren & Mahoney in the early 1970s and was photographed by Paul McCredie.

The Foster House in Havelock North was designed by Miles Warren of Warren & Mahoney in the early 1970s and was photographed by Paul McCredie.

 

One of the most charming things about all these homes, we think, is the fact that so many of them are still in the loving care of their original owners, or have been purchased by people who love them just as much. Only a few of them have been adapted (and if they have, then the alterations are very sensitive), a testament to the enduring quality of their design.

HOME is pleased to offer copies of Modern for the special price of $70, including free delivery throughout New Zealand. You can purchase your copy by visiting www.magshop.co.nz/modern.

Each chapter features floor plans of the homes and text by a selection of New Zealand's leading architectural writers.

Each chapter features floor plans of the homes and text by a selection of New Zealand’s leading architectural writers.

The cover of our book, Modern: New Zealand Homes from 1938 to 1977. It folds out to reveal the full image. Cover photograph by Patrick Reynolds.

The cover of our book, Modern: New Zealand Homes from 1938 to 1977. Cover photograph by Patrick Reynolds.

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