Someone tweeted to me the other week that the Green Square Library entrants are online. Must admit I was barely aware of the competition. The 167 entrants have been whittled down to a shortlist of five by the jury… here is the list for anyone who missed the coverage elsewhere.
But what of the 162 others, architects the world over slaving away, gladly endangering their lives with bad pizza and late night coffee, for the hope that they just might get picked, if the jury ‘got’ them. That last part is a bit of a lottery. The architects on this jury were John Denton, Glenn Murcutt, and Rachel Neeson, all celebrated for their back catalogues of important buildings, and all modernists of various flavours. There’s nothing wrong with that… but it is unfortunate that the jury was announced the day before registrations closed, six weeks after the competition launched, and four weeks before submissions closed.
I was delighted to discover that all the entries are online. This delight diminished when I reached the online depository, for it is a bandwidth-heavy mountain of PDF files. I almost gave up at that point (as many probably have), but thought that these may not last long online. Public websites have a habit of being rebuilt and spring-cleaned from time to time. Only having the stamina to download one file, as I’m bleeding onto the keyboard (bike mishap), here’s a quick walk through. Inevitably shallow, but better than nowt.*
Sooner or later we might see some of the entries appear here at kompete.com, a new initiative by Death By Architecture (I think).
The following images have no credits, as the competition was anonymous. If you know to whom a design belongs, please let me know in the comments or by email and I’ll add a caption.
06.11.12 in competitions
The shortlisted entrants for the Flinders Street Design Competition were announced on Sunday. Many of Melbourne’s larger more established practices are represented. Only ARM and NH chose to go it alone, with the other Melbourne practices partnering with well known offshore companies. The odd one out is the fledgling Velasquez/ Pineda/ Medina partnership. Eduardo Velasquez and Manuel Pineda have just completed their Masters at MSD. Santiago Medina is still a student in Colombia. No doubt they will be freaking out right about now – in a good way.
No images are available yet.
15.10.12 in competitions
Denton Corker Marshall have won the limited competition for the Australian Venice Biennale Pavilion. There is a fair bit about that competition within these pages. Myself and about 750 architects protested against its conditions, which basically limited it to larger companies with overseas experience and experience in similar buildings. This wasn’t to be a pavilion that would take any risks.
In June, the commissioner for the Australian 2013 Venice Art Biennale, Simon Mordant, announced the competition and antagonised the nation’s architects by stating, “This is an art space. It’s not an architectural competition … We need a functional exhibition space that works for the artist and complies with the Venetian authorities’ requirements. And that’s going to be something that’s far more modest.” Mr Mordant is also donating $1M towards the $6M construction budget.
Denton Corker Marshall have read the writing on the wall, designing a stealthful black box that sucks in the light. It is not reflective, and doesn’t want to be anything other than the container Mordant asked for. This appears to be a building trying to disappear, in a terribly elegant way. Whether that’s the right thing to be doing in the canal-side backlot of a garden full of expressive national pavilions, is debatable.
Upon entry into the black box, one will enter a white box. The architects say that they have, “avoided imposing a mannered architectural ‘event’ on the artworks displayed within, rather creating a container on and in which ideas can be explored where the container in no way competes with those ideas.” It could be seen as the polar opposite of Sverre Fehn’s Scandanavian pavilion, also chosen at a limited competition. That building provides a platform to be filled, opening out in two directions to the gardens. That building is beautiful and very obvious, but, like Mies’ National Gallery in Berlin, it is a hard one to hang paintings in. DCM’s building borrows more from the numerous older pavilions decked out in generic neoclassical garb, and housing plain white rooms with four sides.
The DCM building can be read as a discrete and perfect box for the architecture-averse Australia Council. Even the architects say it was conceived as an object rather than a building. But it can also be read as a protest against the silencing of Australian architects, a darker and angrier statement about the state of things. Perhaps a black armband was just what we needed.
Denton Corker Marshall is becoming quite adept at invisible buildings. In 2009 they designed the building that no one wanted, but everyone needed – The Stonehange Visitors Centre. At the time, London director Stephen Quinlan hoped that, “if a visitor can remember their visit to the stones but can’t remember the visitor centre they passed through, we will be happy.”
04.04.12 in competitions
Architect / protaganist: Denton Corker Marshall [DCM]
Congratulations to the boys at DCM. A development of their Di Stasio competition entry. Who needs a new idea every Monday morning. Good pencil graphics. Barrie Marshall is still the best delieator to have come out of Springvale. I particularly liked the barge view on the Bacino, an appropriate nod to Aldo Rossi. Not fast enough for my taste though.
by David White on 4 April 12 ·#
That should be “delineator”.
by David White on 4 April 12 ·#
That’s almost as interesting as Seans’s bar fridge. I suppose it’s a fair comment on Australia’s relevance… Heatherwick was lying through his teeth, but it doesn’t hurt.
by WOFTAM on 7 April 12 ·#
pg 480-481 Content. R. Koolhaas.
by info on 7 April 12 ·#
Hyundai Australia have asked me to show them five Melbourne buildings I like, and I’ll be doing so tomorrow, pottering around in one of their new model Accents. Another five bloggers will be doing the same in other cities. It’s all part of the lead up to a design competition they will have in the coming weeks. Currently agonising over the selection but it should all be in place by 9a.m. tomorrow morning. I have a pretty odd selection of buildings on the list, most of them pre-1980. Photos of the buildings will be tweeted by Hyundai as the bloggers move around their cities, at Hyundai Twitter (which is rather quiet at the moment), and perhaps Hyundai Facebook.
This site will benefit from my labours with a tool that will make posts on butterpaper a lot more colourful. The buildings visited will be professionally photographed and added to the building photos section of this website.
26.08.11 in competitions
Check out Gary Annett Photography for your photographer for this!!!
by Allison Stout on 25 July 12 ·#
The 3rd World Architecture Festival is to be held in November, once again in Barcelona. Lovely city, but shouldn’t a “world” event move around a little, like Miss World does (or did?). Maybe its English backers are just too keen on the quick trip to sunny Spain, though the event seems to shift further and further into winter with every year.
WAF is looking for speakers. If you consider yourself a “leading figure” (go on), then you can submit your interest at this page
The judges have been announced.
Miquel Adria / Maria Aslam-Hyder / Stefan Behnisch / Daniel Bonilla / Justine Clark / Vladimir Djurovic / Akihiko Hamada / Dogan Hasol / Arata Isozaki / James McAdam / Dan Meis / Arlindo Mungioli / Manfredi Nicoletti / Lorcan O’Herlihy / Shane O’Toole / Antony Oliver / John Patkau / Ewa Porebska / Murat Tabanlioglu / Kjetil Thorsen / Sofia von Ellrichshausen / Isay Weinfeld
If you’d like to enter you’d best start saving as the fees start at €545. If you’re just visiting, the early bird price is €445, a good €135 cheaper than it was two years ago when I went. That reminds me, Emap still owe me €580 from that trip. Never got so much as an email explaining… but never mind… If you’re idling about Europe at that time of year, it’s definitely worth popping in. If for nothing else than to watch the jury sessions, in which juries who are strangers to one another attempt to compare international entries with completely different sets of priorities. The questions and answers are illluminating.
Can’t find a review of 2009 anywhere..
J. Clarke. thats [***].
by hairdresser on 29 April 10 ·#
Having been under living, or more like working, under a stone, I missed the news last Friday that three Australian architects won their categories at the World Architecture Festival in Barcelona. Allen Jack+Cottier for the low budget Berry (NSW) Sports hall – the architect said the audience applauded when he showed a time lapse of the building disappearing into the rural night sky. McBride Charles Ryan for the Klein bottle house on the Mornington Peninsula, and Choi Ropiha for the years-in-the-making TKTS development at Times Square, New York (with Perkins Eastman and William Fellows). Attending for the second year, WOHA of Singapore (Wong Mun Summ and Richard Hassell) won the Transport and Housing categories.
The theme of the WAF this year was altered late in the piece from Less is More to Less does More, so ponder that.
09.11.09 in competitions
boys up north of the rio do good site. don’t always need a harbour 2 do it either. same with bris/vegans.
the problem with mexico – never imagine there is a site.
by hairdresser on 9 November 09 ·#
so you’re saying you like that shed hd…?
by cabbie on 10 November 09 ·#
i like nothing. zero. am committed 100% to negative.
i respect it is all.
by hairdresser on 10 November 09 ·#
- its not a shed either.
hows the prius cabbie?
by hairdresser on 10 November 09 ·#
dunno about that wall – a bit too much like a roo shooter just drove off
by luke on 10 November 09 ·#
ha ha ….ha.
—- fcuken hell its a sign. representational mexican shite after all.
take it all back. nice 1 skywalker.
by hairdresser on 10 November 09 ·#
its in rural harbour town….
its a shed they play sport in….
prius broke down battery went flat…..
dragged out the v8 much better for doin city runs…
by cabbie on 11 November 09 ·#
fantastic reference luke…
big 12 gauge….
takin pot shots at the kids…
or are they shooting at someone/thing else..?
by cabbie on 11 November 09 ·#
nah .. reckon just shooting sh*t up for the sake of it – probably did it from the inside too to get maximum reverb.
by luke on 11 November 09 ·#
Congrats to McBride Charles Ryan. My favourite current firm. They deserve every accolade.
couldn’t agree more. I reckon MCR’s mastery of the accolade is staggering.
by hairdresser on 12 November 09 ·#
next up be some killer collonades 4 sure.
three cheers for MCR. job well done.
by hairdresser on 12 November 09 ·#
yeah dropped a black shirt at that house one night….killer fare….
long way you know…
stopped in for a cuppa before the drive back…..
admired the many angles that made the head go a bit sideways….beautifully faded colours….the sculpturally cupped flooring….its fantastic how well it blends with its environment….theres a whole colony of spiders taking opportunity for refuge….
all in all a outstanding example of contemporary architecture….
wasn’t it only built a couple of years back ?
by cabbie on 13 November 09 ·#
heard they can’t afford a cleaner cabbie and r above picking up a feather duster. couldn’t live with all those dust and pubic hair collecting ledges myself. – – 3 cheers for MCR and i looove the ESD approach of letting the building dissolve in the rain.
by hairdresser on 15 November 09 ·#
its a response to the site….
good job don’t you think sean ?
put it on the heritage register before its too late.
by cabbie on 20 November 09 ·#
ENTRY FOUR MONEY SHOT
Another local high profile competition sinks into a brawl?
Brian Rudman at the NZ Herald has been closely following the competition – which has just completed Stage 2. Stage 1 winners were briefed further by ‘technical and design experts’ before being given another 3 weeks to come up with their final, less outrageous submissions. He has penned a number of provocative articles which are lowering the morale amongst the Stage 2 architects and may cause the whole project to be scuttled.
In a recent Rudman article, Auckland Regional Council chair Mike Lee spoke out against the quality of designs last week, saying they were, “lacklustre, underwhelming and mediocre”. He was then was backed up by Auckland Mayor John Banks: “I have not yet jumped to a conclusion that the whole show has been a waste of time, because at the very least, at not very great cost, we have got people thinking of this.” All a bit odd as John and Mike had approved the judge’s selection earlier.
That “not at very great cost” was a slap in the face for the 237 entrants who spent, on average, 32 hours each on their entries. If that sounds like a short time, bear in mind that we (yes I was one) were only given three weeks to do it, most of which was spent trying to untangle the large and contradictory brief.
That brief is also under fire. It was weighed down by prescriptive requirements for a big box cruise ship terminal on the east side, and a 12MB heritage report which gave the distinct impression that at least one of the large old wharf sheds should stay.
Most of the entries take a softly softly approach to the development, aware that time and budget are not on their side. The development has a paltry $47M budget and is due to open in 2011, so most finalists concentrated on the bare essentials and marked off space “for future development”, when there might be some money to spend, and a need to attend to beyond the Rugby World Cup “Party Central”.
Softly softly doesn’t work well with the herald letter writers, who want something ‘world class’ and ‘iconic’ – an example being someone’s proposal for a giant kiwi on the end of the wharf.
Rudman also questions why the Posts of Auckland come out of this so well – they sell the crumbling wharf (1860/1908) to the public for $40M on the condition that the public spend another $27M building a cruise terminal on it for them. Sounds like a deal! But this was known before the competition so why bring it up now?
Some are now questioning why Auckland needs a new cruise terminal for idly rich american geriatrics who are advised to eat on board lest they pick up a tummy bug, when one was built for them in the late ’80s. But that leaky development – Princes Wharf, was so jammed full of hotels, restaurants, and offices, that today’s larger ships can no longer be effectively serviced (and they block the view).
If a final winner is selected from the final eight (final seven really as two are the same design by the same architects), we will find out in less than a week. If you’re in Auckland, pop down to Quay Street to see the entries – the room was empty when I visited.
The NZIA is noticeably mute on the issue – many of its spokespeople are involved with the final entries.
03.11.09 in competitions
i’m over looking at drawings with the same cut out happy people running around in them. who would have thought computers would be lamer than airbrushes. pull the plug.
by hairdresser on 3 November 09 ·#
I’m not sure cutout people are terribly happy with their lot.
by peter on 3 November 09 ·#
01 looks like centrelink & 08 looks like somebody ripping centrelink off.
that’d be novel.
by hairdresser on 3 November 09 ·#
Methinks 1 and 8 are the same architects. 1 is for now, 8 is for later.
by peter on 4 November 09 ·#
This could be fixed with one demolition drawing.
(Deletion is a reasonable proposition)
by luke on 8 November 09 ·#
Rudman rubs some sea salt into architects’ wounds, lets pollies & judges off scot free.
“No doubt there’ll be lots of excuses from the design gurus about the inadequacy of the brief, the shortage of preparation time and the stinginess of the budget.
All of which is true. But all these shortcomings were obvious from the day the contest was announced. That’s when the heavyweights of the architectural world should have spoken out, should have boycotted the exercise.”
Righto. So architects who give a damn about the waterfront should have boycotted the comp – leaving it to those who don’t? This mess will leave such a foul taste in mouths about town that the Auckland City will be lucky to get any gratis design advice from architects again.
by peter on 10 November 09 ·#
The NZ Herald reports on discontent about the winning designs in the Queens Wharf competition. There are various grumblings from academics, Maori representatives, and quite a few readers. And Dave Mitchell has a go at the competition itself: “This is an $80 million building project. The total sum to be paid to all contestants for the key design ideas stage is 1/1000th of the project cost. That shows you the value that our national and local governments together place on design.”
And Geoff of Grey Lynn has a point… “I’m angry that we have to build a cruise terminal all over again because the Princes Wharf residents don’t like ships blocking their view.”
11.10.09 in competitions
233 entries were received for the “ideas” component of this Auckland competition for a cruise terminal and event space on an important waterfront site. They can be viewed online in a pixellated sort of way (even if you download the “high res” PDF.
Quality varies wildly. Many, many entries thought the best approach was to place a BIG SYMBOLIC THING on the wharf. So we have cruise terminals wedged into.. a taniwha, korus, a conch, wakas, pebbles, stones, upturned dinghies, rugby balls, sails (lots of them). Strangest big thing would have to be the baby elephant, street elevation is of Dumbo’s posterior (below). There is a small note that the intended colour is off-white. Get it?
Entry 029 – street elevation
Entry 029 – street elevation
Something a little closer to the brief.. Can’t say a lot about it as the description is pixellated. It combines several common traits in the entries – by addressing the nostalgia requirement (12MB heritage assessment), a landscaped building element (hello Yokohama ), and consideration of the function of the wharf when the ships aren’t there (about 9 months of the year).
Entry 024 – view to the sea
Entry 024 – bird’s eye
13.09.09 in competitions
“We’ve tried to be inventive all of the time, not to go back and take something forward and deploy it again. When you do a lot of competition work, there’s a temptation to do that, but we’ve always tried to start again. Now, I think tactically that may sometimes have been naïve, that in a way there is a need to conserve energy, and I think at certain points, when we’ve had a number of things running, we’ve dissipated our energy through trying to continue being inventive.”
Some insights on the Federation Square construction process that are worth a read too. Did you know that they ran out of stone and had to make what they had left stretch?
Architect / protaganist: Lab architecture studio
The World Architecture Festival has just shortlisted some lucky architects who now have to figure out if they can afford the trip to Barcelona and the door charge when they get there. The Australasian contingent is:
ARM – Melbourne Recital Centre
Woods Bagot / NH – Melbourne Convention Centre
In Site – Base Camp Chewton
NMBW – Elwood House
McBride Charles Ryan – Klein Bottle House
BVN / Grose Bradley – Mending Wall
Pacific Environments NZ – Yellow Treehouse Restaurant
Warren and Mahoney – NZi3 Innovation Institute
Opus – Wilson School
Woods Bagot – Ivy
Fearon Hay – Wintergarden at The Northern Club
BVN / Gray Puksand – Bendigo Bank HQ
RTA Studio – Ironbank
Allen Jack+Cottier – Berry Sports Hall
Design Forum Architects – Ironbark
WOHA – Genexis Theatre, Singapore
BVN – Challenger Workplace
22.08.09 in competitions
RMIT student Tom Morgan, fresh from winning the Regrowth Pod competition, won the HP Cityscape 2020 competition at a ceremony in Melbourne last week. I’ve no clue what this competition was about other than “visions of an Australian city skyline in the year 2020 “- but here are some pics and words I’ve dredged.
#1 TOM MORGAN, RMIT, ‘Broke + Remade’
There was a great contraction – a strategic withdrawl as a city of five million splintered; focused into dense agglomerations around surviving infrastructures. The greatest of these grew around the old city centre, a place of nearly two million in a neat triangle bound by the old ‘burbs of Preston, Footscray and St Kilda.
#2 IAN ROBERTSON, FBE, ‘URBAN HOMESTEAD ACT of 2009’
Space in the city isn’t pure, and can’t be defined by simple figure ground relationships. Space flows around unvisible whorls and eddies, and tracing movement in the urban environment exposes spaces that have unknown unactivity – space we don’t know that we don’t use. These unused sites are sites for the injection of life into the urban muddle – dead space for living people.
#3 Jas Johnston, Uni Melb, ‘SKYLANES 2020’
13.08.09 in competitions
And the winner is… Denton Corker Marshall.
From a shortlist of big boys and girls:
Anyway, here is the competition website (there isn’t much there): UTS BROADWAY
No pics, DCM did not contribute to the fine public service that is the Supercolossal UTS gallery .
Nor did any of the short-listed practices.
So as this is an increasingly visual medium, here is a pic of the site, pre-DCM.
Presumably taken from the neighbouring UTS tower, a brutalist number by Michael Dysart .
And here is a pic from the gallery of one of the not-shortlisted entries, by Terroir.
The short list consists of suspiciously… large looking firms. Which makes one wonder why anyone of smaller means need have entered. The competition brief notes that capability statements were to be assessed by a subpanel, independently of the designs. Does this mean the firms disqualified for not being behemoths were not even considered by the design jury? Apparently not – the brief says: “It is expected that some finalists will be selected on the basis of design concept, and some on the basis of capability.” But they do then say that the capability subpanel will “assess the ability” of all finalists without looking at them – so who knows what went on. Elizabeth Farrelly noted in April that the short list, “carefully excludes anything strange or provocative.”
Smaller practices (mine included) are becoming wary (and weary) of entering Australian competitions like this, they are a lot of sleep lost for no good reason. Matt Chan (Scale Architecture ), said on Terroir’s Google Group that,
“We didn’t enter as we feared the outcome would be as such. The thought was to direct our resources to a different competition where we would have a semblance of a chance of being be recognized. If we were to have entered, I also struggled to think of a capability partner who was not already doing the competition, who would not go on to claim full credit + who would see small fry such as myself adding to their band of experienced design directors.”
Perhaps the University of Melbourne, who did away with an open competition for their new architecture school, were actually doing us smaller fledgling practices a good deed – by not wasting our time – though it didn’t seem like it at the time. Will the boomers will have it all locked up for some time to come?
For interest’s sake, some recent university building competition shortlists:
University of Melbourne architecture building:
UNSW Energy Building:
VIA AusDesignReview on Twitter
FIX Sorry to Matt for getting both his company name and URL wrong.
University processes are glacial, but from Monday 17th August the UTS Broadway website will include all the shortlisted entries.
The DCM project was shortlisted for the second stage by the jury responsible for assessing the (anonymous) concept entries. I’ve not been privy to the concept entries, but am hoping that the discussion may move on from a “big-boring” versus “small-young-fab” dichotomy to one that addresses the architectural merits of the various proposals once we all get to see them and have a better basis for judging the judges.
by Sandra Kaji-O'Grady on 13 August 09 ·#
Just heard this, a little late: Shortlisted teams for Melb Uni’s new architecture building competition have been in Melbourne this week to, “attend a briefing session, and as part of their visit they have each been invited to give short presentations as follows”:
Been & gone: Wednesday 24 June, 5.30-7pm: McBride Charles Ryan + DCM
Been & gone: Thursday 25 June, 5.30-7pm: Sauerbruch Hutton with NH Architecture + Koning Eizenberg with William J Mitchell and Gehry Technologies
Tonight: Friday 26 June, 5.30-7pm: John Wardle Architects and Office dA + Diller Scofidio + Renfro
“All presentations will take place in the Prince Philip Theatre and will be 45 minutes in duration.”
26.06.09 in competitions
Oh damn, Regrowth pod comp got exhibited in Whittlesea and I had not a clue. Here ‘tis
And recently up, the designs for the Bushfire Homes Service . People choose a design, talk with the pro bono architect for an hour or two, then pay someone to get it drawn up.
The Victorian Bushfore Recovery and Rebuilding Centre will also be building two temporary Building Advisory Centres in Kinglake and Marysville, and well as starting a mobile service to look after other areas.
13.06.09 in competitions
Architect / protaganist: Architects Bushfire Homes Service
Maybe this happens a lot? A creative hub design competition being run by the Domus academy has as its prizes various discount coupons (sorry: scholarships) for its Masters courses. Even if you aren’t placed you’ll get a 10% discount to the course. Deal!?
The regrowth pod competition is all over, and the 35 entries whittled down to a shortlist of 7. I was one of five judges, which meant my personal fave didn’t make the shortlist. Such is life.
A BIT LATER…. Further whittling has found us a winner – Tom Morgan / Sharkmouse’s super robust Tanker house.
08.05.09 in competitions
Peter: now that you (being one of the judges) mention your personal fave in contrast to the shortlist, it’d be interesting to hear which entry actually was your fave and why…
by Thomas Stromberg on 14 May 09 ·#
Best not aye, united front’n‘all. I’m happy with the result.
by peter on 21 May 09 ·#
This one slipped past the radar. A competition (now closed – hopefully someone saw it) for the green roof designs for three existing Melbourne buildings. It has been organised by the mysterious Committee of Melbourne, and there was an article in The Age, buried in the business section.
The competition results should be out in a few days, so I’ll try to remember to report back.
Green roofs have been a big thing in the States, judging from the amount of american green roof spam I get, but here it is seen as a bit expensive, though I don’t think $50 a square metre sounds that pricey (the basic green roof option mentioned in the article). From my experience, the main problem is the building owner, not wanting to deal with roof access issues which could raise the cost significantly. They seem to prefer their rooves black and bituminous, melting in the summer sun…