#The Former Macrow’s Furniture Arcade#
Architecturally, it is Geelong’s City’s best Edwardian Freestyle commercial design, it possesses the city’s first cantilever verandah also it is a major element in the important Ryrie Street commercial streetscape.
Geelong architects, Tombs & Durran, called tenders for rebuilding, in brick, premises for Hendy Leary & Co., estate-agents, at the Ryrie Gheringhap Streets’ corner. The News of the Week published a photograph in December 1911 showing the building complete with names Norris (?) & Macrow as a caption.
A later directory entry lists Macrow’s furniture arcade in 85 and a Miss C M Smith, draper, in 87. It is thought have possessed Geelong’s earliest cantilever street verandah when built.
Rate listings give Frances James Leary as the owner into the 1920s, with tenants such as Kearney Brothers boot warehouse replacing Macrow’s arcade. Samuel Blake, an East Malvern chemist, owned it in the 1930s and under the style of the Pivot meat Emporium, Oswald Williams owned and occupied the premises for a lengthy period.
The Pivot Fruit Emporium was the next major business there in the 1960s.
Belying and reconstruction theory, the building is a highly representative if individual expression of the Edwardian era. Following the Edwardian Freestyle, the design is parapeted, brick and two-storeys with the major focus at the corner, in the form of a crown-like bayed parapet and surmounting dome. On either elevation the bowed oriel windows provide plasticity to the already highly modelled form. The parapet cut-outs, and onion-like cappings to the corner parapet piers are distinctive elements as is the high Mansard-like roof line which houses vents and provides a backdrop for the sculpted parapet forms below it. Some cresting survives on the ridge.
Underneath, the cantilever verandah shows its wrought-iron/steel framing and the piers which divide the altered shopfronts survive.
As an Edwardian Freestyle commercial design, this building has few equals in Geelong City.
Location: Geelong, Victoria, Australia
Camera: Canon EOS 50D
Lens: Sigma 18-200mm f3.5 – 6.3 @ 28mm
Exposure: f11, 1/10, ISO100, RAW, Handheld
Processing: Photomatix 3.2 (3 exp ±2) & Photoshop CS4