Category Archives: A.W. Purnell


My latest book titled, Out of the Ordinary: Popular Art, Architecture and Design, is due to be published in September this year by Cambridge Scholars Publishing. The book’s blurb by Andrew Chrystall: Out of the Ordinary is one part unembellished … Continue reading

Posted in A.W. Purnell, Architecture (excluding A.W. Purnell), The everyday and the surreal

A New Clubhouse for the Albert Park Golf Club

Albert Park Golf Clubhouse by A.W. Purnell Miniature golf hazard by Tim Cameron Albert Park Golf Clubhouse and miniature golf hazard by Yuan-Min Tao Albert Park Golf Clubhouse by Gerry De Guzman Albert Park Golf Clubhouse by Nur Zainal Abidin … Continue reading

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The Clubhouse Experiment: Arthur Purnell and the Commonwealth Golf Club

The above article has just been published in GOLF ARCHITECTURE no. 12, 2010

Posted in A.W. Purnell

Forthcoming Talk at the Melbourne Chinese Studies Group

Next MELBOURNE CHINESE STUDIES GROUP seminar Date: Friday 3 September 2010, 6pm Admission $2   All Welcome Venue: Jenny Florence Room, 3rd Floor, Ross House, 247 Flinders Lane, Melbourne (between Swanston and Elizabeth Streets) Topic: The forgotten Chinese architecture of Arthur … Continue reading

Posted in A.W. Purnell

Wattle Path Palais De Danse

Last week I spoke at the St. Kilda Historical Society’s ‘Memories of St Moritz’ evening at the St. Kilda Public Library. The St. Moritz ice skating rink was a famous St. Kilda landmark. However, the building was originally a dance … Continue reading

Posted in A.W. Purnell

Barlow Motors

Purnell’s 1924 sketch of Barlow Motors, 20 – 28 LaTrobe Street, Melbourne. Newspaper advertisement of 1927 for Barlow Motors. One of the most colourful clients of Melbourne architect Arthur Purnell (1878 – 1964) was Alexander George Barlow (1880 – 1937), … Continue reading

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Early A.W. Purnell-Designed House For Sale

One of the first houses—if not the first house—designed by Arthur William Purnell is currently for sale for just under $AUS1,000,000. ‘Tarina’ in Newcombe Street, Portalington, was designed and constructed by Purnell & Sons, Arthur’s father’s firm, for Mr. P.M. … Continue reading

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Francis Birtles & Alec Barlow

A.G. Barlow, the proprietor of Barlow Motors, was one of A.W. Purnell’s best and most interesting clients. In 1926 Barlow Motors sponsored Francis Birtles, an Australian adventurer, and Barlow’s son Alec (a.k.a. Alex), an adventurer in his own right, to … Continue reading

Posted in A.W. Purnell, Travel

A New Book About A.W. Purnell

A very handsome large format book titled The Architectural Arts of A.W. Purnell and the Modern Society of Lingnan has just been published (ISBN 978-7-218-05804-7). It contains essays on Purnell’s architecture by Shi Hongping, Li Suimei, myself, Peng Changxin, Tang … Continue reading

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A.W. Purnell and the Big Business Ball

This spectacular art deco backdrop was designed by Arthur Purnell for the Big Business Ball at the Melbourne Town Hall. So far I haven’t been able to find out anything about this event, but judging by Purnell’s design it presumably … Continue reading

Posted in A.W. Purnell