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House Moerdyk
Pretoria, Gauteng

Gerard Leendert Pieter MOERDYK: Architect

Date:c1926
Type:Homestead
Status:Extant
Street:274 Pomona Street

 


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Coordinates:
25°45'47.33" S 28°12'13.78" E Alt: 1397m

If one would drive by House Moerdyk, it would simply fade into the background and be discarded as just yet another normal home, but it is when one stops and look at it that you realise it holds something special. From the outside the home appears big but doesn’t imply itself onto the site. Once you enter you suddenly feel different, being faces with a lot of rooms and spaces, one purpose per room, and almost void of multifunctional areas. This multitude of spaces makes the house feel smaller and more intimate, with great effect. Intimacy in these spaces makes one slow down whilst wandering the home and it is in this moment that one can truly realise and appreciate the fine intricacies and level of detailing that each room consists of. From specific patterned wooden flooring to chamfered corners where walls meet, each detail was considered with care, almost over detailing with decorations around every corner as was common in the era when the structure was built. Architectural interest is evident in Gerard Moerdyk’s home with the inclusion of a long, wooden, church styled bench next to a window connecting with his love for designing churches. His need of making the home feel synchronized is seen through the pattern at the top of the window frame corresponding with the pattern on display case windows and the dining room chairs. Ultimately the house feels comfortable to move through and will definitely leave a lasting impression on anyone who takes a moment to view it.

ADDITIONAL HISTORY AND FACTS

The stone that was used in the masonry work of the home came from the quarry that once existed in the Hillcrest area within Pretoria. The granite used to pave the area in front of the front door was excess granite from the Voortrekker monument that was left over after its construction. The pattern that is formed from the granite is a cross of which one of its limbs forms the main axis that flows through the home. Every gable on the roof differs from the other. The dining room contains niches on each of the four corners. Within these niches sits head statues of four important Afrikaner leaders and influencers within history, that includes Paul Kruger. A few years after Moerdyk’s passing, the house was sold. It is only recently, within the last 20 years that the house was bought back into the family bloodline and currently sits under the ownerships of the grandchild of Gerard Moerdyk, who, along with his family, has been living in the house for the past 10 years.

(Eben Wagner, July 2021)

It was declared a National Monument and is now a Provincial Heritage Site.

These notes were last edited on 2021 07 28