Burdekin House columns

Burdekin House was once described as one of the finest buildings in New South Wales and one of the sights to see when visiting Sydney.

It was a grand 3-story house built in 1841 for wealthy merchant Thomas Burdekin and located on Macquarie Street, across the road from Parliament House. When demolished in 1933, several architectural elements were saved including the columns that adorned the front verandah. These columns then went on a journey, enduring two demolitions and several changes of ownership. Their story tells us much about heritage in 20th century Sydney and the extreme pressures associated with a growing city.

Burdekin House - St Malo columns

If the fluted timber columns made for Burdekin House now look a little battered and perhaps not as elegant as they were in the mid-19th century, it is hardly surprising after surviving two house demolitions

Talks & webinars

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Vivienne Chaffer : Colour [interior design student workbook]

Phyllis Shillito and her colour curriculum 1945–1979

This event focused on the colour curriculum of pioneering Sydney-based colour designer and educator Phyllis Shillito (1895–1980) of the 1940s to the 1970s

Watercolour of a group of people landing ashore

The Extraordinary Story of Rose de Freycinet

Hear the story of Rose de Freycinet, the first woman to write an account of a global circumnavigation, with Suzanne Falkiner

A colour chart of ready-mixed paints

Historic colour in the home

The many sources in the Caroline Simpson Library that can bring colour to the homes of past, with Matthew Stephens

Children's nursery

Animals in our Houses

A Parade of Animals in Nurseries, with Michael Lech