IS First Year Lecture

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Nick Szczepaniak

‘A Defensive Architecture’

A reflection of and response to the effects of climate change. The work is deliberately allegorical and provocative.

Set in the Blackwater Estuary in Essex, the project envisages a set of militarised coastal defence towers that perform multiple functions:

1. The principle role of the towers is to act as an environmental warning device. The architecture is alive, dramatizing shifts in environmental conditions; breathing, creaking, groaning, sweating and crying when stressed. Air-bags on the face of the towers expand and contract, while hundreds of tensile trunks are sporadically activated, casting water on to the heated facades to produce steam. An empty watchtower at the top of each tower gives them the impression that the fragile landscape below is constantly being surveyed.

2. Across the estuary, a bed of salt marshes provides a natural form of flood defence and habitats for wildlife. Due to rising water levels and adverse weather conditions, the salt marshes are quickly deteriorating. The proposal suggests how megastructures can be integrated and used to encourage the growth of natural defence mechanisms against flooding in order to protect the erosion of fragile coastline areas and our most important cities. Over time, sand is collected at the base of each tower to form a spit across the mouth of the estuary, absorbing energy from the waves.

3. Internally, the towers serve as a vast repository for mankinds most valuable asset; knowledge. The architecture is a knowledge ark, which protects books from culminative and catastrophic deterioration.


By Ai Weiwei

Millions of porcelain sunflower seeds underfoot at the Tate

making of here

On Rotundas and Oculi

James Turrell new and permanent at The National Gallery, Canberra

Rome, the Pantheon

By Bjarke Ingels Group


A Public Lecture

Andrew Benjamin

‘Writing Art and Architecture’

In this lecture, Professor Andrew Benjamin will speak about his new publication Writing Art and Architecture. Here he turns his attention to architecture, design, sculpture, painting and writing. Drawing predominantly on a European tradition of modern philosophical criticism running from the German Romantics through Walter Benjamin and beyond, he offers a sequence of strong meditations on a diverse ensemble of works and themes: on the library and the house, on architectural theory, on Rachel Whiteread, Peter Eisenman, Anselm Kiefer, Peter Nielson, David Hawley, Terri Bird, Elizabeth Presa and others.

6:15pm drinks for a 6:30pm start / Wednesday 13th October / level 5 Architecture Studios

By Terroir

By local architects Terroir, The Leichhardt House, view images here

A Gibson / Ziegler Workshop

International guests Ruth Gibson and Christian Ziegler will be doing workshops with Interior students in October. Please send your expression of interest to take part to with your year level, which workshop you are interested in and two lines on why you would like to take part.

Profile info here, more to come shortly, take a look:

Ruth Gibson, Igloo

Igloo is an internationally renown group based in London working across spatial design, virtual world making and art.

In their own words their practice is: multifaceted ranging through installation, intervention, virtualisation, film and performance drawing on the multiple layers of reality and unreality. Much of the work is in recreating environments and systems where coding joins hands with choreographies of the body. The core concept being the intersection between technology and the human spirit, where our ambivalence to technology is explored with originality, humour and intellect.

Christian Ziegler