I have to be honest.
It is always with a touch of trepidation, and mountains of excitement, when such a special home comes onto the market.
Why do I have trepidations you may ask?
I want to do the home justice. I want to tell the story as the family has, with the heartfelt nostalgia and pride they have shared with me.
The home is inspiring. The condition is original. The garden is extensive.The land is enormous.
This is a property calling out for creative vision, a lover of modernism, and an enthusiastic, brave restoration.
The cleland.home is a divine MCM of the highest pedigree by architect Theo Bischoff, a young Melbourne architect who established practice in Canberra in the 1950’s.
The perfect partnership was formed in 1961 with the modernist creative vision of Bischoff and the Cleland family who engaged the young architect to design a family home inspired by Lindsay and Sylvia’s love of Sunset Modern California.
The cleland.home is characterised by Bischoff’s style of architecture. Influenced by simple, rectangular planning with internal courtyards; a limited palette of natural materials; and precise detailing.
A subtle, thoughtful extension is the only alteration to the home in 60 years. The Cleland’s ensured the home remained honest to the integrity of the original design careful to retain the harmony and balance.
The design celebrates the organic beauty of the surrounding landscape, a native bush block with mature gums on an enormous 1967 m2 foothold at the base of Mount Ainslie Nature Reserve.
The dialogue between building and landscape continues inside the house. The bagged painted exterior brick and interior colour scheme chosen to match the tones of the Cootamundra wattle leaves. The interior colour has been faithfully kept since its inception, repainted several times the same ‘Cootamundra’ blue.
Utilising many time honoured materials to define and enhance the interiors, walls are wrapped in wood, the cork floors throughout are warm and a deep honey colour, and the exposed bagged brick internal walls absorb the heat from the central wood fireplace. The mid century design focuses on form and function, flooded with natural light, gorgeous floor to ceiling glass and connectivity to the outdoors.
Lindsay and Sylvia ensured Theo Bischoff’s vision for the house and garden was fulfilled. The perspective from the north is visually impressive. The eye catching hand laid dry stone wall the work of Lindsay, collecting the rocks himself from the earth which is now Lake Burley Griffin. Embracing the home and following the contours of the land, the dry stone wall was meticulously laid and constructed to follow the curving line around the house as depicted in the original plans.
The honest humanistic character of the hand laid wall, speaks to the passion the Cleland family had for Bischoff’s modernist design and the home it has been for their family.
Where personal experience rolls into larger conversations about the home and the life they lived here you can understand why the home has remained relevant and current to this day.
.mesmeric mid century home designed by Theo Bischoff
.original condition with all character retained
.north facing windows running along the entire length of the home
.three separate living areas
.large lounge room
.formal dining/sitting area
.family room with extensive built in joinery
.three dormitory style bedrooms off family and meals area
.kitchen with original cabinetry, servery and shutters
.free standing fireplace
.split system heating/air-conditioning in lounge
.massive 1967m2 block backing reserve
.garden full of Australian natives and pathways with seating areas
Living size: 204m2 (approx.)
Land Size: 1967m2
Land value: $1,095,000
Land rates: $6418 pa
Year Built: 1962
In response to current government guidelines, public open homes will now be available for up to 10 people excluding staff. Please register your interest by via email to firstname.lastname@example.org prior to attending to secure a time slot.
33 Godfrey Street