Recent positive shifts in the city of Adelaide’s design culture were reflected by the City of Adelaide Prize, won by the playfully intimate Pink Moon Saloon by Sans-Arc Studio (read our ‘Explore Adelaide’ write up here), with a commendation to the delightfully joyous Zoos SA Nature’s Play Ground by Phillips/Pilkington Architects and WAX Design.
The Development Act has embedded within its guiding principles the idea we need design principles in every project — a first for Australia. Homburg was keen to stress the value of having design excellence located in the Act (and how important it is to have a Treasurer state the value of design) but was also keen to reinforce that it’s now up to membership to make sure we achieve positive outcomes from such a strong departure point. The legislation of design quality will have a profound and positive impact on the quality of the built environment, with the recognition of the value of practitioners being embedded in development process from start for finish.
The difficulties in assessing the merit of student work arranged collectively imparts a judgement on the always-shifting culture of the school itself. Yes, obvious and repeated pitfalls were on show (student work often presents a design immaturity that embraces empty metaphor at the expense of programmatic development, lovingly so), but the overal trends were noticeably positive. Renders sought to inform rather than obscure, technical skills were consistent and of a high level, and graphic layout was simplified rather than sexy.
Tschumi envisaged the building as a superimposition of three shifted geometric grids in a similar vein to his most famous project, the Parc de la Villette in Paris. As with la Villette, the abstract geometric constructs that generated the project have minimal effect on the actual experience, but provide a symbolic capacity. The geometry of the New Acropolis Museum, positioned alongside the Acropolis at the base of the hill (the most modern and largest building in it’s vicinity), suggests a precise understanding of an architecture as experienced event. In such an encounter, movement becomes a measure of temporal rhythms in the promotion of programmatic encounters. The interiority of the museum as a type (a traditional container for historical artefacts) is seceded by its relations to its geographical neighbour in the Acropolis.
A key point of interest in housing the Sculptures of the Acropolis within the Festival Centre is the interaction provided between the sculptures and the original civic ambitions of the Festival precinct itself. The cultural ideals imported by the sculptures of the Acropolis import arrive at a critical time for Adelaide as the Festival Precinct tries to reclaim it’s original ambitions as a public forum and cultural heart of the city.
Since 2013 the Foundation for Hellenic Studies has been petitioning a #returnthemarbles on social media, and has attracted legal support from Geoffrey Robertson QC and International Human Rights lawyer Amal Clooney, and verbal statements of support from Stephen Fry and George Clooney,respectively.
Disciplinary change will rely on organising a collective response to the professional challenge of marginalisation. Sourcing constant and repeatable fees is a burden on architectural practices — we don’t only have to pay the mortgage, we have to design the building, too!
When you ask an architecture studio what it produces, the colloquial answer is often ‘we make drawings’. This is wrong. ‘Making drawings’ implies a professional outcome located strictly within the built-form. What we actually make are design responses — responses that until now have largely formalised around built outcomes.
Sam: There has got to be a push. We will be pushing it but there has to be a push as well from students, from recent graduates, as well as practitioners, about the fact that the information and the ideas that are generated within the conference have a wider impact and have a more ongoing impact. We’re happy with those elements, we’re happy with how they played out, but I think that its absolutely essential that we don’t just sit around and feel good about that now.
They saw no need for a master plan. I’m not exaggerating here, it took six months of advocacy to bring them to do a master plan. And then once they had the master-plan, to actually use it. It was dropped a number of times and we had to bring it back up and hold people to account to it. And so the now that you finally got this tool — which is just basic thinking in terms of getting a good urban result — you use it. And here is how to use it.