2011 Australian Institute of Architects – Awards Night

Its taken a while, but we have recovered from the party that was the AIA(WA) Awards.

This year had over 140 entries and it was universally agreed that they were all of a high quality.

We all had a great night out together and were very pleased to receive commendations for two of our projects.

Commendation: Scene Apartments (Multi-Residential Category)

See more here

Commendation: Central Park (Urban Design)

See more  here

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St George’s Cathedral Sculpture Project

Gresley Abas recently completed a proposal for a sculpture on the ground at St George’s Catherdral in Perth.

This proposal for the Sculpture Project draws inspiration from the symbolic abstraction of St George and the Dragon. St George is represented as a grounded landscape element – using form and light to represent St George’s Cross. The Dragon is represented as a ‘dismembered’ assemblage – made of specially treated aluminium scales that hover over the base of the grassy bank.

Site CollageTop ViewStreet level perspective

Some images of the proposal…

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Shinkenchiku Residential Design Competition

This project was the entry submitted by Gresley Abas for the Shinkenchiku Residential Design Competition run by Shinkenchiku-sha Co. Ltd in conjunction with the Japan Architect Journal. The competition was to honour the memory of architect and educator John Hedjuk and his three by three grid (nine-square) by designing four houses in a hypothetical four by four (sixteen-square) ‘Garden City’ grid.

The brief included strict spatial requirements for the houses as well as the requirement to consider issues such as orientation, contiguity, privacy and the construction of the scheme as a whole.

Using the projects proposed grid, Hejduk’s original grid was transposed into the sixteen-square-grid field. A series of geometric steps initiated by the original transposition created a field of possible conditions: interference, interruption, intersection, rotation and overlay, allowing for the creation of the core footprint of the proposition. Point and line where drawn into a generative ‘pinwheel’ arrangement of possible dwellings.  The ghost(s) of Hejduk’s nine-square-grid emerged at points where the geometric juxtaposition of the two grids manifests.

Through the dialogue between the two principles (dis)ordering the site, an armature for the proposition was extracted. The armature defined the structural backbone for the proposition. The contiguity between the dwelling modules enabled further breakdown and the redistribution of boundaries. The proposition was able to re-present itself as a complex of 2, 4, 6 or even 8 dwellings of various sizes. The mix recognised the decreasing predominance of the nuclear family as the basis for organising the hierarchical nature of domestic space.

As a typology to be extended over a larger area, the proposition was a flexible variant with multiple possibilities.  The courtyard principle provides an inner sanctum to each cluster of dwellings distributed within the greater expanse of a ‘Garden City’.  Meanwhile: variations in the type, number and configuration of dwellings within each sixteen-square-grid cluster provide a rhythm and variance pattern within the framework of the established typology.


AxonometricStreet level perspectiveTop level perspective

Internal courtyard perspectiveEntry perspectiveInternal courtyard perspective

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Reece Bathroom Innovation Award

This project was the entry submitted by Gresley Abas for the annual Reece Bathroom Innovation Award. The brief was to design either a single or series of bathroom products or bathroom furniture items.
Vanity viewShower viewShower / Wc view

AxonometricShower meterWc view

The entry, named “The Heart of Gold” is a unified bathroom core incorporating WC, shower  (with water usage meter) and vanity as well as associated hot water system and cistern.  Another key goal was to adress sustainability issues such as water use, minimising material use and costs when installing a complete bathroom and associated services.

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Taipei Performing Art Center Competition

This project was the entry submitted by Gresley Abas for the Taipei Performing Arts Center International Design Competition run by the Taipei City Government. The competition was to develop a scheme for a performing arts centre to serve a variety of large scale performances including dramas and operas.

The brief included requirements for three theatre spaces of differing scale and function located in a central performing arts complex. The three theatres are contained under a “green roof” which also houses meeting rooms, a resteraunt and the fly towers.

The site has strong links with the local market and shopping district and is located adjacent to a rail station. The requirements of the site program and the strong connections with the city provided opportunity to create a new cultural and social hub for the City of Taipei.

Some images from the submission.

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Murray Mews Competition

Gresley Abas undertook the Murray Mews Competition which looked at activating the Murray Mews / Wolfe laneways of Perth.

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ATC Armadale Campus construction

Australian Technical College – Armadale Campus construction ongoing.

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Extreme Housing Competition

Gresley Abas with Simon Anderson Architect recently completed the Extreme Housing Competion for Sustainable Housing. Located in the city of Cherepovets, Russian Federation, the aim of the competition is to advance the use of steel in sustainable housing through the identification and application of best practices and innovative approaches.

‘….design a building for the site, the brief and budget: avoid the grand gesture, the
imperial, ‘walking cities’, fashion, déjà vu. Build it a bit, but not too much, like an oil rig
on its side.

Use pre-fabricated steel framing, built off site on concrete or steel piles..’

‘…Focus on the site, its horizon, expansiveness, smells, winds, flora, fauna, sky, and

‘Use [one] big form to respond to the landscape.’

‘Make it a large house not a small resort. Kitchen the heart. Make a place to share the

We make homes for shelter and retreat. We bury them where we can for climatic
stability. Where we cannot, we raise the earth over the buildings like a blanket.
We create shared semi-enclosed spaces to mediate the climate and to create
communal places that are protected from the weather.
We vary scale and density for diversity, to achieve accommodation targets, to
create community.
We are a long way from town: for now, we will need cars.
There is a lot to do and make: we propose a system.
A system that can enlarge and shrink as required.
A system that is a flexible supporting framework for sustainable technologies
A system with variations that can be mixed and finely tuned.
A system that is adaptable, modular and infinitely extendable.
[One] big form….1, 10, 100……

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