DUNKERLEY, Michele




Author Tags: Architecture

Salt Spring Island resident Michele Dunkerley is a business attorney whose current portfolio of work involves helping revitalize Stephenville’s historic downtown square. A retired deputy general counsel for Microsoft, Dunkerley understands the role of an interdisciplinary education in cultivating a life informed by diverse and creative influences. Her own engagement with this process is something she is passionate about.

“I was introduced by my real estate agent to Hank Schubart’s houses on Salt Spring Island in 2003. “It’s a Schubart,” she said as we walked through the unassuming front entrance of what is now my home. And thus began my journey researching and exploring the life and work of Hank Schubart. I am not an architect, but once I set foot in a “Schubart house,” I wanted to know more about the man who designed my house with its low profile, large eaves, and fragrance of aged cedar. This project began as a way to introduce the larger world to Schubart’s work on Salt Spring Island. In return, I have been introduced to an extraordinary man.”

Dunkerley drew on Schubart’s copious files and notes, as well as files at the Frank Lloyd Wright Archives and the Friedman Archives at the University of California, Berkeley, and interviews with family, clients, and contractors, to author this exploration of his life and works.

“Houses Made of Wood and Light is the result of an incredible partnership with Jane Hickie, who helped co-interview, edit and produce the book with me, and Jim Alinder, who communicates Schubart’s architectural aesthetics through remarkable photography.”

“I found in my own research that I was as enamored with his personal life story as I was with his architecture.”

Houses Made of Wood and Light is part of the Roger Fullington Series in Architecture and includes 99 color photos, 19 b&w photos, 21 line drawings, and 1 map. This illustrated volume about architect Henry (Hank) A. Schubart, Jr. (1916-1998), and the island community he helped to create, explores how this West Coast modernist used the ideas of Frank Lloyd Wright to design houses in which nature flows seamlessly into architecture. His opposition of the Vietnam War prompted his move to Canada and Salt Spring Island, where he was offered a place to create the kind of architecture that responded to its surroundings, becoming the de facto community architect and designing more than 230 residential, commercial, educational, and religious projects.

BOOKS:

Houses Made of Wood and Light: The Life and Architecture of Hank Schubart (University of Texas Press, 2012) $50.00 978-0-292-72942-1. With Jane Hickie, Ed., and Jim Alinder, photographer.

[BCBW 2012]