The slender red brick building is the office that Napier architect Louis Hay built for himself after his previous office was damaged in the devastating 1931 earthquake.
The windows are interesting and the dark layer of bricks grounds the building but otherwise there is little or no decoration until the roofline.
Centred on the building is an arrangement of lines, squares, circles and finally a diamond bearing the year 1932. You can see these elements in various combinations in Hay's buildings all over Napier.
Above this detail rows of bricks are stepped back creating subtle interest.
The columns are also capped with decoration. Thin smooth rendered sections, painted a light cream or green colour, narrow the brick columns as the approach the sky. A series of twelve bricks are spaced up the column jutting out from the flat surface. The whole column is then topped with a green slab.
MELBOURNE ART DECO
In 2009 Robin Grow published a book on Melbourne Art Deco, with images largely supplied by David Thompson. The book quickly sold out and he is pleased to say that it has now been re-published by Brolga Press, with updates, errors corrected and a new cover.
Best of all, it is selling for about $25 in the shops and on-line. Art Deco & Modernism Society members can purchase a copy from me for $22, (includes postage within Australia). For overseas orders please email for postage rates. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested, and advise if you would like the book to be dedicated and/or signed.