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Victorian Carpenter Gothic c. 1860—c. 1890
|If a line of demarcation could be precisely
drawn between contrived styles and vernacular architecture, Victorian
Carpenter Gothic would have to be located close to that line. Because of its
affinity with the vernacular, this style flows on virtually unchanged into
FEDERATION CARPENTER GOTHIC. In this book, VICTORIAN RUSTIC GOTHIC iS
defined as an almost exclusively residential style, while its close
relative, Carpenter Gothic, is seen as a style used for churches of modest
size when economy of expenditure and simplicity of construction were
important. It is, as the name suggests, an idiom which made great use of
timber, demostrating how the tradesman used, connected, expressed and
embellished the various timber components of the building. Such
embellishment as there was usually drew on shapes and patterns reminiscent
of the contrived VICTORIAN ACADEMIC GOTHIC and VICTORIAN FREE GOTHIC styles.
Models for at least some Victorian Carpenter Gothic designs were provided by
the Ecclesiological Society in England, which encouraged the development of
timber church architecture in the South Pacific region.
The archetypal Carpenter Gothic building is a small, box-like church with a steeply pitched gabled roof of corrugated iron, standing in isolation beside a dirt road on the outskirts of a country town. The stud framing of the walls, complete with bracing and noggings, is exposed on the exterior of the building, the boarded lining being fixed to the inside face of the frame. Apart from a minuscule tower or belfry, the only non-functional decoration is found on the elaborately scalloped and pierced bargeboards, where this unpretentious timber version of Gothic acquires a surprising delicacy.
Quite often such buildings effortlessly achieved a genuinely architectural quality not always attained by more pretentious structures.
"A Pictorial Guide to Identifying Austrlian Architecture; Styles and Terms from 1788 to the Present"
RICHARD APPERLY, ROBERT IRVING, PETER REYNOLDS. PHOTOGRAPHS BY SOLOMON MITCHELL.
Angus & Robertson Sydney 1995 ISBN 0207 18562 X
Copyright © 1989 by Richard Apperly, Robert Irving and Peter Reynolds.
|The Uniting Church at Narooma, New South Wales built 1914; Federation Carpenter Gothic architectural style|
|The parsonage associated with Narooma's Uniting Church|