Thursday, March 25, 2010

Change of mind...

A girl can always change her mind!

Last night I fell in love with the quintessential timber country home...
Today I fell in love with this

The property, circa 1842 at Hobart in Tasmania, backed by Mount Wellington and gazing over the bay, is the last of the Greek revival villas, and the grandest.
Commissioned by Thomas and Catherine Chapman from Government architect William Porden Kay, the building is superbly realised. Originally on 600 acres, 3 miles from Hobart, This Colonial Villa is entered through an overscaled Tuscan portico, with tympanum over. The double columns are complemented by a light trellis verandah. Triple french' windows flank the front door, looking to the view garden, mountains and River Derwent. In the language of a villa, it is academic in its detailing, single storied, set in a cultivated landscape.

Internally, it is the apogee of Colonial artistry, taste and skill. The entry hall is a happy conjunction of Regency detailing and Italianate taste. To the four curved corners are niches, originally sporting figures of the seasons. The ceiling is barrel vaulted. The walls have reeded pilasters that extend through the vaulting. The end of the vault has a glazed lunette window, flooding the space with light. Four doors, to the principal reception rooms lead off this hall. 

There are many rooms beyond. What is in front however is the pleasure pavilion.
It was built during the difficult times of the 1840s recession. It is the last of this model of house, before the exodus to the Victorian goldfields and a shift to Victorian taste. It celebrates the achievements of Tasmania during its golden age literally with a drawing room panelled in golden Huon pine joinery. As rare then as it is now, the use of this timber was a first. Originally the furniture was Huon pine as well. Married with this are the original imported London mantelpieces, made from Italian statuary marble. To the drawing room the corners of the wall are curved, to further enhance the luxurious quality.

Celebrated in its day as a great achievement in art, photography and the press, the property is of National significance. The garden is documented in a series of art quality photos in the nineteenth century. The leading artists of the day painted it and were commissioned to fill it. Internally, the dining room contained a landscape painting by John Glover. Furniture commissioned by Chapman for its interiors from William Hamilton is now in the Tasmanian Museum.

Its importance as an achievement in Colonial Hobart cannot be over emphasised. Defying the economics of the day and the vicissitudes of time, it remains as intact, convincing and as fine a house for living as conceived. When so many others have been lost or compromised to obscure their intent, that this has not happened only enhances its rarity.
Warwick Oakman B Des (Hons)
Architectural Historian

images from here

Of course we are looking to move down!
we are looking to move into something newer!
we are looking to move into something I can paint white!
 But what are dreams for if not for this!



  1. I love following you in your dreams and I agree dreaming is a healthy past time. Sounds like a move is in your very near future, how fun!! Keep us posted, Kathysue

  2. Gorgeous Images! Thank you so much for stopping by and leaving a commento n my blog :) Dinner went SMOOTHLY! It tasted so good YUM YUM YUM Super Proud of myself :) Lucky us to have hubbys that feed us well! Hope to hear from you soo doll!


  3. Nice pictures.
    Yes, I know that the translater is very funny. haha...
    But I can't find a better one.
    Hus Stina

  4. Tasmania sounds quite amazing...and to think all I knew of it was the cartoon character the tasmanian devil! Shame on me. Tell/show us more!

  5. That is what I call a dream....

    Leeann x

  6. are all Tasmania houses looking like this one ??If so now I know where to go live!
    Beautiful pictures indeed
    P.S.thanks for your comment, it was funny! You're definitely my kind of girl!;.))


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