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Curtin wins accolades at national architecture design competition

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29 October 2008

Staff and students from Curtin University of Technology’s Department of Architecture and Interior Architecture claimed the top prizes at a national architecture design competition recently.

Curtin Lecturer Simon Pendal of Fremantle, and Senior Lecturer and Chair in Architectural Design, Stephen Neille of Floreat, operate Perth architectural practice, Pendal and Neille, which was named joint winner of the ‘About Face’ design competition run by the Australian brick industry’s peak body, Think Brick Australia.

Their winning design was awarded prize money of $10,000.

Think Brick Australia Chief Executive Officer Linda Ginger said the ‘About Face’ competition is research-based and allows architects to undertake architectural research within their own practices.

“This year’s competition revealed the widespread interest in rediscovering some of the lost craftsmanship associated with traditional building materials like clay bricks as shown by the winning entries,” Ms Ginger said.

Pendal and Neille’s winning design comprises a new arts centre and adjacent public space in Wolf Lane, a thoroughfare lined with predominantly red brick structures that connect King, Murray and William Streets in Perth’s CBD.

“We wanted to create architecture of space and light, a new building that is compelling and memorable to join the ensemble of enduring brick structures that signify Perth.” Dr Neille said.

“This new centre is a small civic institute for events, gallery shows, presentations and parties.”

Mr Pendal who graduated in Architecture from Curtin in 1994, said winning the “About Face” competition was fantastic.

“Our approach aims to establish lucid and beautiful architecture that can touch the imagination, so this is a wonderful accolade for Stephen and I,” Mr Pendal said.

Final-year Curtin Architecture student Shane Winter won the inaugural ‘About Face’ Student Competition from a field of more than 80 students from universities around Australia.  Finalists were selected based on how their designs exemplified a level of ingenuity and innovation in regard to brick use. Final year Architecture student Georgina Willis was awarded a High Commendation.

In keeping with the Curtin involvement at the awards event in Sydney, it was also announced that Curtin Adjunct Professor of Architecture and Interior Architecture Adrian Iredale will take on the role of competition advisor for 2009-2010.

Head of the Curtin School of Built Environment Professor David Hedgcock congratulated his staff and students on their accolades.

“This shows the high calibre of our staff and students at Curtin and their innovative approach to design,” Professor Hedgcock said.

Modified: 29 October 2008

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