The University of Melbourne’s Architecture and Planning Library Rare Materials Collection contains some wonderful historical items, mostly obtained through donations from architects and planners and the former library of the Royal Victorian Institute of Architects. Some of the rare items relate to Australian domestic architecture, particularly from around the end of World War I, through the 1920s and 1930s and after World War II, when the idea of building a ‘dream home’ was in vogue. This is reflected in the image above (top left) on the cover of the 1 April 1931 issue of The Australian Home Beautiful.
The image top right shows the catalogue of an exhibition held by the University of Melbourne’s Architectural Atelier 8-21 March 1933. Entitled ‘Exhibition of Domestic Architecture’, the exhibition showcased 22 architectural models made by the Atelier.
The image bottom left illustrates an advertisement for bathroom fittings, and is from the book, Fifty modern homes … to show the trend here and abroad and to demonstrate that modern buildings can be interesting and even beautiful, by A. Lanyon Clark and George R. Hann, Sydney: Building Publishing, 1940.
The 1930s sitting room (bottom right) is from an article, ‘Colour: the secret of successful interior decoration’, in Centenary Homes 1934-35: Building Industry Congress of Victoria, Melbourne, c.1935.