Russell Jack (1925-) and Pamela Jack (1928-2006)

27 January 2016 .

Russell Jack studied architecture and town planning in the late 1940s after returning from service in the Royal Australian Air Force.

In 1952 Jack was awarded the Byera Hadley Travelling Scolarship and met his future wife Pamela, also an architecture graduate, on the ship on the way to England.  Like many young Australian architects, Jack travelled around the UK and Europe looking at buildings. After returning to Sydney in 1954, he set up practice with John Allen, and Keith Cottier joined them the following year. The firm became Allen Jack + Cottier in 1965.

The Jack House, designed by Russell and Pamela as their won family home, won the Sulman Award in 1956. The house includes expressed brickwork and is built across a creek running under the house. The interiors were richly embellished, with extensive use of stock wallpapers and dark timber beams.

Russell Jack’s major works include the Carroll House, St Ives (1959), the Palmer House, Turramurra (1959), the Waterhouse House, St Ives (1962), and the Jacobs House, Wahroonga (1971) (winner of the Wilkinson Award).

Hallmarks of Jack Residential Design: 1950s -1970s:
  • Local adaptation of modernist principles which became known as the Sydney School
  • Bush settings with views to take advantage of natural environment
  • Influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright and Japanese residential design
  • Openly expressed materials including brickwork, timber, and stone
  • Clean, modular plans utilising a primary structure and infill walls


jack house







The Jack House, Wahroonga
Russell & Pamela Jack, 1955-56







The Jack House, Wahroonga
Russell & Pamela Jack, 1955-56
Source: Allen Jack and Cottier website
jacobs house


The Jacobs House, Wahroonga
Russell Jack, 1963
Source: State Library Victoria


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