I wanted to prepare for some 5×4 photography over easter. I had a shortlist of modern and Art Deco building in the Melbourne Area but needed to scout them first before i came out with the big camera. One of them was the Mac Robertsons ladies college.
MacRobertson Girls' High School was a notable example of the Dutch Stijl architectural style and the first Australian example of this modern functionalist style designed by Norman Hugh Seabrook (1906-1978).
Constructed in 1934 during centenary celebrations of Victoria, MacRobertson was vital to the progress of modernist architecture in Australia and essential in the strong re-emergence of the state after the economic downturn of the depression.
The brickwork consists of two stretchers and a header in a Flemish bond with an extra wide and deeply raked horizontal joint which emphasises horizontality, while the cream bricks themselves emphasised shadows. Seabrook selected the local Glen Iris cream bricks at a time when they were only being used sparingly in public buildings. Using the cream brick for the entirety of the building was seen as a modernist approach and set a trend for many future buildings in Victoria.