The origins and design of Dorich House (1936), Kigston Vale, London, SW15

Martin, Brenda (1999) The origins and design of Dorich House (1936), Kigston Vale, London, SW15. (MPhil thesis), Kingston University, .


In this thesis I investigate the design of Dorich House and consider its relationship to other houses of the Modern Movement built during the 1920s and 1930s. It is proposed that this design was an individual interpretation of this movement by Dora Gardine and her husband, the Hon. Richard Hare, who provided the funds to build Dorich House. The house is unique and does not fit easily into the established canon of modern architecture. It is hoped that this research will contribute to the current historical debate which is concerned with redefining the Modern Movement. In this study I consider the influence on the design of Dorich House of the architecture of Latvia, where Gardine grew up; the work of Auguste Perret and the work of Godfrey Samuel, which I propose profoundly influenced Gardine's final design for her house. I also take into account the impact of Straits Chinese vernacular architecture upon Dora Gardine. It is likely that this exerted an influence upon her when she was living in what is now Malaysia and Singapore, during the period when she was designing her final studio and home. I intend to demonstrate how the design of Dorich House is an amalgam of all these influences as well as a product of the nascent Modern Movement at the beginning of the Twentieth Century. The research is contextualised through comparisons with the work of late 19th century and .early 20th century architects such as Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Adolf Loos and Josef Hoffman. In the conclusion, I interpret the research taking account of recent work in the fields of cultural studies and gender studies.

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