Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 52 Page 53 Page 54 Page 55 Page 56 Page 57 Page 58 Page 59 Page 60 Page 61 Page 62 Page 63 Page 64 Page 65 Page 66 Page 67 Page 68 Page 69 Page 70 Page 71 Page 72 Page 73 Page 74 Page 75 Page 76 Page 77 Page 78 Page 79 Page 80 Page 81 Page 82 Page 83 Page 84 Page 85 Page 86 Page 87 Page 88 Page 89 Page 90 Page 91 Page 92 Page 93 Page 94 Page 95 Page 96 Page 97 Page 98 Page 99 Page 100 Page 101 Page 102 Page 103 Page 104 Page 105in a popular culture phenomenon recently labelled the ‘tiki’ movement. In the graphic design, interiors, architecture, film, fashion, entertainment and hospitality realms, many entrepreneurs marketed products and leisure experiences to Western consumers by enticing them with images and immersing them in atmospheres suggesting decadent living among unspoilt tribes on Pacific and Caribbean islands. Films and musicals like ‘Bali Hai’ and ‘South Pacific’ were romantic classics for the movement’s followers. In the interiors and landscaping of his houses—and in his later ‘thatched hut’ rooflines  – Snelling became an up–market interpreter of many tiki dreams. The Snellings arrived in Kyoto on 13 January 1964, where they would have visited numerous temples and gardens—studying the same traditional architecture that inspired Frank Lloyd Wright. After Japan, the couple were in Hong Kong, from where they took a ‘terrifying’ trip to Macau in a coastal vessel, the MV Tai Loy, which was heavily fortified against the pirates then tyrannising boats navigating the South China Sea. According to Patricia in a later interview with The Sydney Morning Herald they shared this trip with 1500 Chinese ‘and only two other Europeans’. The latter were two American brothers, Marion and Rick Dudek, who accompanied the Snellings to Cambodia. Commissioning a car and driver in Phnom Penh, the quartet travelled 300 miles through the jungle to see the architectural spectacles at Angkor Wat and other sites near Siem Reap. Angkor Wat had a profound effect on Snelling. He and Marion Dudek both took many colour slides of the monuments—using the same new–model Minolta single–lens reflex cameras, fitted with 50mm objective lenses that could take good pictures with minimal light. However, Dudek noted that Snelling’s photographic compositions were much more artistic and unconventional than his own. ‘We both took almost exactly the same angle once, but Douglas waited for some local people to come along —and they gave scale to his picture and made it come alive,’ he said. After returning to Sydney, he enthused about Angkor in a centre– spread colour pictorial article for The Bulletin, Australia’s leading weekly news magazine. He wrote: Angkor Wat (Pagoda Town) is on the grandest scale of anything in the world today and is perhaps second only to the famed Tower of Babel. The water garden and gardens surpass Versailles; the plazas are far grander than St Peters in Rome; the towers have more impact than the Pyramids. They are tremendously beautiful, beehive shapes nearly 300 feet high, Neutra’s, who influenced him very much. The members weren’t as thin as Neutra’s and he also used a lot of steel substructure, which he clad over. But he tried a lot of revolutionary ideas for the time and he strived to arrange things differently. John Hunt and I were both influenced a lot by Doug Snelling’s work when we designed our own houses later. His details rubbed off on us. Doug loved his Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole tapes—those old big rolling tapes. He’d play those while we were sitting round the office having lunch. But he wouldn’t eat much with us, unless he was busy. He loved going upstairs to watch midday movies, because of his time in Hollywood. Patricia was upstairs most of the time and kept away from the office. She was a little bit aloof but she would still say howdy. I think they were happy. Graeme Hewett worked for Snelling for nine months in 1963, between stints with Sidney Ancher’s firm, then called Ancher Mortlock and Woolley. He also was a fourth–year student (with Greg Banks) at the University of New South Wales: I switched from Ancher Mortlock because Doug was offering a bit more money than they were paying. But I went back because they were really the best firm in Australia and I developed a special relationship with Sid. I fulfilled the role of the son—he used to blast the devil out of me in the office. Snelling’s work was slicker and more hard–edged than Ancher’s—that could have been the Hollywood influence. He was a very gentle person, a very nice man to work for and very considerate, but not an easy man to get to know. We were part time students, so we were bloody tired and while he required us to be at the office, he was very accepting of our needs and was interested in our work. Very correct behaviour was expected. The office was always immaculate— you were never allowed to leave anything out on the desks. We used to sit on stools at the desks and the phone was on top of the filing cabinet. But you never felt you could ring your girlfriend—whereas nobody cared less at Anchers. On 9 March 1963, Patricia and Douglas welcomed their first son, Christopher Alexander Gale Snelling. Later that year, with Bibaringa now completed, they left Christopher with nannies to take their first major trip together. Departing Sydney on 28 November aboard the Matson Lines’ SS Mariposa, they disembarked first in New Caledonia, Fiji and Hawaii— where Snelling could update his 1937–38 exposures to Polynesian living with observations of many more Western influences since the World War II activities of the Allied forces. Between the 1930s and the 1960s, tropical islands were subjects DOUGLAS SNELLING DOUGLAS SNELLING 68 69 1955–1966 1940–1955