April 28, 2009

Iwan Iwanoff - Honorary Herculoid and Perth Architect - Six More Examples

City Beach is a nice area. Blue Indian Ocean views abound. Fresh air.  Short drive to the city. Swather of  modernist homes from the 60's, 70's, and 80's. Eyes on the road! Nestled in former sandy hills, Iwan Iwanoff produced some amazing abodes in Perth's western suburbs. Tombidis House, Wembley Downs, 1972.




Like many other Iwanoff's, the entrance is grand, and the letter-box is from Amzot - home of The Herculoids. What came first, this house, or the Herculoids? Anyone?


A Japanese punk band named "Mach Pelican", who lived in Perth for a while, had song about City Beach. I am sure Toshi san would have enjoyed visiting the next two houses, located in the songs name-sake suburb. No, I am not going to write the Japanese pronunciation of City Beach. Wright House, City Beach, 1975.






Maxwell House, City Beach, 1967. Good, to the last drop.



Balcatta. Home to lighting outlets, tool hire establishments, and well, not much else. Tucked behind a bland Balcatta wall, blocking almost the entire house from the street, is this example of a more compact Iwanoff. Entry way stacked brick treatment is yet another example of Amzotion influence. Piccini House, Balcatta, 1968.


When your local strip is an Iwanoff, your suburb instantly becomes a lot cooler. This two building strip-shop/office complex in Shenton Park is one of two examples of Iwanoffs commercial work in this post. Shops, Medical Center, Shenton Park, 1968.



North Fremantle provides the other commercial premises example.  Although, I would be more than happy to residentialise this rather minimalist commerical box. Hi Fi Recording Studio, North Fremantle, 1968.

My kind of doorway.

Many more Iwanoff's to come...

April 27, 2009

Iwan Iwanoff - Brutal Mike Brady vs Frank Lloyd Wright

Brutalism. Iwanoff brutalised Northam in the 70's. The Northam Town Council Offices (1974) and Library (1971) complex. Yes, this is in the country town of Northam, and yes - the good people of Northam, after settling in with the library complex, decided three years later to commission perhaps the single most brutal small scale building in Australia.






The Golovin House, 1959, Mount Lawley, clearly shows the Mike Brady side of Iwanoff. The site itself is modernism in a sea of federation (...not that theres anything wrong with that). This neighbourhood has been part of my stomping ground for some time. As a friend told me, who grew up on the same street: "I didn't know it was an Iwanoff, I just knew it as the house I would buy if I won lotto... "

Ramp to your front door? Yes please!


The next Iwanoff house is located in Coolbinia, the garden suburb to the west of Mount Lawley. Tough to get a good shot, as there is a huge For Sale sign up at the moment. I am unsure of the name, or construction year of this project. Your own Iwanoff - for 1.275 million. Ouch.


The highlight of the day was getting an extensive interior tour of the Iwanoff Tomich House (1972), located in City Beach. Iwan Iwanoff himself lived in this house. The current owners are clearly proud to live in such a masterpiece, and are also in awe of the talent of Iwanoff. Now that I have seen the four story spiral staircase, fish-scale-like brass interior finishes, and cathedral-like summer/winter lounge room, "in awe" is just the beginning.

A multi-story staircase surrounded by a glass and clinker brick tube takes you to your own private viewing platform - an eagles nest at the highest point of City Beach. You can see the highest point of the house in the photo below - the windowed box. Almost 360 degree ocean and interior views. Iwanoff really went to town on this one, inside and out. Mind-blowing.



The vault-like front door, replete with stainless steel facia. Although this door provided the gateway to the most amazing house, the same gateway also emenated sadness, as I discussed Iwan Iwanoff's death with the current owner, who was unaware of the fate that became of Iwanoff. As with Cameo, the Communards, and the Timex Social Club, for Iwan Iwanoff, 1986 was a brutal, brutal, year.




April 18, 2009

Iwan Iwanoff - Ten of Perth's Best Houses

Iwan Iwanoff. Ivan Ivanoff. Cool name, cool houses. Many people know the name of this Bulgarian born architect, who decided to design some of Australia's most cutting edge homes of the 60's and 70's, right here in Perth. Those who don't are usually amazed that Dianella, of all places, is perhaps the epicentre of the Iwanoff world. Examples are also found in City Beach, Floreat, Mount Lawley, Cottesloe, Coolbinia, and Karrinyup.

UPDATE: OCTOBER 2010 - the bottom of this post has links to over thirty Iwan Iwanoff projects, all featured here!

Frank Lloyd Wright meets Mike Brady. Marsala House, 1977, Dianella. Spectacular. This, like many others here, is world class. If Marsala was in LA, there would be 30 years of magazine articles on it by now.





No matter which beach I'm heading to, it always involves passing this masterpiece. Paganin House, 1965, Floreat.



Karrinyup Shopping Center is perhaps the worst place in Perth. Just around the corner, is one of Perth's finest. Featherby House, 1970.





City Beach has at several Iwanoff's. The Roberts House, 1967,  has had a garage addition added recently.




Another City Beach cinder block example. Murphy House, 1970. Currently, the original owners are living in this amazing abode, and report that apart from a small alteration, the house is completely original. Oh, and 1995 kitchen fire meant that a new kitchen was installed.



Back to Dianella - Kessel House, 1975.



Still in Iwanella (1969)...



The 1969 Burszyten House, located in Iwanella.




The Iwanoff House, his former residence, 1966, Floreat. Detailed letter-box articulation is a recurring theme.




Two Iwanoff "town houses" metres from the beach in Cottesloe. In places, age is getting the best of them. Time for some repairs at the Glencser Duplex...




There are a few more houses I know of, the Mount Lawley and Coolbinia examples are nearby, so I will get them up here soon. Northam Town Council is possibly the most brutal looking building in all of Western Australia. I have a couple of other commercial premises to add as well. Some interior shots, and some drawings could also be on the cards. Keep checking back, or subscribe to this blog (is that even possible? ...sounds good though...)

Just like the Pet Shop Boys, Huey Lewis and the News, and Lionel Richie, Iwan Iwanoff died in 1986.

UPDATE: SEPTEMBER 2010. There are now almost thirty Iwan Iwanoff buildings featured on this website. I will add more links soon, so feel free to bookmark this page.Click on any line below for more info.

(so far 22 Iwan Iwanoff's indexed on this page ... I am increasing the size of all photos and tidying things up as I go, this list will be complete soon!)
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