19 NOV 2018

Mid-Century Architecture in Focus – The Liberal Catholic Church of St. Francis (1964, Grafton)

Visiting a small but perfectly formed mid-century building by Jack Patterson.


Words and Photography by Dan Eagle

This small, intriguing and very angular building was designed by the relatively obscure architect Jack Patterson in 1964. Patterson attended Waitaki Boys High in Omaru in the 1920s before gaining a degree in Architecture from Auckland University in the 30s. Time spent working locally with celebrated European Avant Garde architect Imi Porsolt gave Patterson an international perspective.

Patterson served in the Navy during WW2 and then did an Architecture Bursary in London and gained work experience there before returning to New Zealand. This compact but sophisticated church is an elegant example of Patterson’s work in New Zealand. It features a memorable, geometrically pitched roof, generous use of glass and open space with textured brick detailing.

Patterson also designed residential homes throughout Auckland so there must be some hidden gems waiting to be rediscovered amongst the suburbs.


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