“This small table was my grandmother’s and was in our family home forever. My grandfather was a pharmacist with a phosphate company on Ocean Island and I think some trader came past on a boat and we bought it, because there’s not a lot of furniture in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It’s important to me that we have something that’s part of my past.”
“I think there are a few things you can do for someone in life that are nice: you can give them a book you love, you can invite them into your home for a meal, or you can introduce them to someone – and that doesn’t have to be a romantic thing. [Gallery owner] Tim Olsen knew I was into mid-century modern and introduced me to Paul Davies, as Paul paints mid-century modern houses. Paul and I got on like a house on fire and have become great friends. He kindly gave me one of his paintings [above].”
“This is Bugsy, my eldest son [then two, above] and I at the iconic Stahl House, which is the Pierre Koenig case study house, in Los Angeles. My wife, Michelle, snapped this shot. It was great just hanging out as a family. We had been planning on going to Dubbo, but Michelle found out she was pregnant and realised we wouldn’t be going anywhere for a while, so we decided to go to New York and Los Angeles.”
“This is an interesting house: it’s called Merricks Beach House, but it’s got nothing to do with Merrick Watts [Tim’s ex-comedy partner]. The house, by Melbourne architect Rachel Nolan, has been described as being a lovely homage to Australian modernism, so when I was planning the *TV series – which is about the birth of Australian modernism and the evolution of our suburbs – it seemed to be a good example of how you can nod to the past in a really nice way.”
*Streets Of Your Town, ABC, premieres Tuesday, August 2 at 8.30pm.
“Instagram has become an interesting part of my life. I would go to lot of open houses by myself, like a little nerd, as no-one else I knew was interested in houses or collecting furniture. But Instagram changed that, as I found a community of people who were also into it. [Brisbane-based artist] Sam Cranstoun and I ended up following each other and became great friends. I was doing a fanzine called ‘Car of the Day’ and I asked him to do a cover for me. I was expecting a quick sketch but he sent this artwork [above], which was almost too good for my zine.”
“In the late 1960s, my parents had a homewares store/gift shop in Mount Eliza, where I grew up. When they sold the business, they had some stock left over and I kept this lovely German Melitta tea set, as it was so petite and beautiful.”