Linden, Acland Street, 1870

Original post 27 February 2020

Linden in #AclandStreet is quite a survivor! While all around it were converted to flats, or demolished and replaced by flats, and St Kilda went from exclusive residential, to flats, and then cheap flats, the Michaelis family, who had built it in 1870, stayed on ! It was designed by fellow German emigre Alfred Kursteiner, who is described as ‘competant’ but prolific. They finally sold it in 1957, when the new owners sold off the garden on both sides, and ran the house as a #privatehotel, and then #StKildaCouncil bought it in 1983 for use as a gallery. The old photos are from the mid 40s, and the 70s. Moritz Michaelis had arrived in 1853, establishing a #softgoods business, which must have done rather well over 17 years. He is better known for the Michaelis Hallenstein tannery business, though that wasn’t established until 1867. It’s a very fine house, very typical of the mid 1850s-1870s, nothing extravagant, restrained details, symmetrical, simple #castironlace even; the houses of the 1880s threw all that restraint out the window. The #hooppines in the garden I guess were planted in the 80s, replicating the ones there before, though closer together.

I went into #LindenNewArt Gallery, but to look at the building not the set (of course). It’s a fine restrained interior from 1870, the only elaboration is the plaster cornicing, and fireplace tiles. Hard to imagine but when the Michaelis family were living there, it would have been wallpapered and/or painted, even the ceiling, lots of rugs, lots of furniture, lots of potted palms, lots if curtains.

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