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Projects

In addition to supporting enquiry by external researchers, the Architecture Museum seeks funding for projects which focus on using the Museum's collections and can be managed and undertaken by its staff.

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Current projects

 


Past Projects

Unley ParkBridget Jolly (2010/11)

Once described as a 'rus-in-urbe' on the Adelaide fringe, the suburb of Unley Park, settled in the 1850s, has been the site for numerous architect-designed dwellings and associated commissions. Unley park: An Architectural Portrait introduces a selection of the architects and their clients and projects and reveals the influence of their designs on the suburb's distinctive landscape, particularly through the twentieth century.

Copies of the publication Unley Park: An Architectural Portrait (School of Art, Architecture and Design, University of South Australia, Adelaide, 60pp) are available from the Architecture Museum and also via the Order Form (PDF 10kb, download Adobe Acrobat)


The Architecture and Times of Russell & Yelland Architects

Russell & Yelland Monograph CoverThe Architecture Museum's Monograph 05, Designing for Communities: Russell & Yelland Architects was launched on the 31 May 2011 at the talk given by its author, Alison McDougall.

The event was associated with the SA History Festival, May 2011 and was held in conjunction with Russell & Yelland Architects.

Copies of the publication Designing for Communities: Russell & Yelland Architects (School of  Art, Architecture and Design, University of South Australia, Adelaide, 60pp) are available from the Architecture Museum and also via the Order Form (PDF file 28kb, download Adobe Acrobat).



Taking Australian Architectural and Built Environment Records into the Commons

The Architecture Museum is working with the Library at the University of South Australia on a Seeding the Commons project funded by the Australian National Data Service (ANDS).  ANDS is supported by the Australian Government through the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy Program and the Education Investment Fund (EIF) Super Science Initiative.

Titled 'Taking Australian Architectural and Built Environment Records into the Commons', the project aims to make the Architecture Museum's collection metadata more widely available to researchers locally and internationally through Research Data Australia. The first group of records created through the project is available at: http://services.ands.org.au/home/orca/rda/index.php (Click on University of South Australia under 'Providers'.)

Read more about the project in the July issue of the ANDS newsletter, Share, at: http://ands.org.au/newsletters/newsletter-revised-2010-07.pdf (July 2010 newsletter, page 6)


Past projects

Designed civic spaces for children: an interdisciplinary study of playgrounds in urban and rural South Australia

Mervyn Smith, A childrens playground, 1940, M.A. Smith collectionChristine Garnaut, Wendy Schiller, Anne Glover, Julie Collins, Susan Collins, Louise Bird
with industry partners Oxigen Landscape Architects + Urban Designers and Lady Gowrie Child Centre, Adelaide.


Formally designed playgrounds laid out following architectural, planning and landscape architecture principles and underpinned by theories of child development are a modern phenomenon. This cross-disciplinary project investigates the background to, and objectives and physical manifestation of, designed children's playgrounds in 20th century urban and rural South Australia. It identifies the design lessons that might be drawn from the historical examples and applied in contemporary practice.

Funded internally by a divisional research performance fund grant



Esther Legoe table by Boxall WalkleySouth Australian Architects and their Works, 1836-2006

Christine Garnaut, Julie Collins, Susan Collins, Alison McDougall and Christine Sullivan


The project's aim was to develop a comprehensive single list of SA-based and trained architects compiled from a variety of sources.

The key project outcome is the Architects of South Australia online database, launched in late 2008 - providing community and industry with a database of material about the professional lives and contributions of a selection of the state's architects from 1836 to the present day.

Funded by the SA Department for Environment and Heritage

Image: Water colour of Mr Harris over his drawing board with Esther Legoe's table in the foreground at the architectural office of Woods, Bagot, Jory and Laybourne Smith. Sketch by dAuvergne Boxall circa1917, Walkley collection S293


How to build a good home cheaply: a history of the South Australian Home Builders Club

South Australian Home Builders Club pamphlet S284Christine Garnaut and Julie Collins


The South Australian Home Builders Club Incorporated (SAHBC) operated between 1945 and 1965. A relatively unknown South Australian organisation, its members built about 400 houses in metropolitan Adelaide, thus making a critical contribution to the state's post World War 2 housing shortage. Organised as a cooperative and run on collaborative lines, the SAHBC offered a unique means of obtaining a house in the face of postwar building restrictions and constraints. Club members were not skilled in design and building but learnt on the job and taught each other. They bartered their labour by banking their individual hours and using accumulated credit to advance the construction of their own dwelling. No money was exchanged, hence the Club's suggestion on its promotional literature that it offered a means 'to build a good home cheaply'.

The project completes research previously commenced and consolidates the outcomes into an illustrated monograph.

Funded by the History Trust of South Australia

Image: South Australian Home Builders Club pamphlet, c.1950s, South Australian Home Builders Club collection S284


Behind the image: the cultural significance of architectural drawings

Christine Garnaut, Julie Collins and Susan Collins


Literature on the appraisal and management of architectural collections points to the need for a common, grounded approach to assessing the significance of architectural drawings. In the absence of a guiding rationale to determine which drawings to keep and which to discard, collecting institutions are faced with a dilemma, and potentially significant records are placed at risk. Adding to the problem is the fact that, due to the rise of Computer Aided Design (CAD), hand drawing has been superseded and, potentially, historical architectural drawings (i.e. hand drawn) may be regarded as valueless.

Griggs house S167-789

This project:

  1. examined the cultural significance (heritage value) of architectural drawings
  2. devised a methodological approach to the assessment of the cultural significance of architectural drawings
  3. proposed preliminary guidelines for retention schedules for architectural drawings.

The project team ran a workshop related to this project at In History We Trust, the 15th State History Conference, in May 2006.

Findings from the research are published as:
Collins, J., Collins, S. and Garnaut, C. (2007) Behind the image: Assessing architectural drawings as cultural records, Archives and Manuscripts, vol 35, no 2, 86-107

Funded internally by a divisional research performance fund grant

Image: Elevation and plan of house at Linden Park, by Harold Griggs, 1941, Griggs collection, S167/789



Growing up: the rise of the multi-storey building in interwar Adelaide

AMP Building Hurren Langman and James S248Christine Garnaut, Julie Collins, Alexander Ibels and Susan Collins


The first multi-storey buildings were built in Adelaide during the 1920s and 1930s. They contributed to the city's physical growing up and its psychological coming of age. This project examined the international tall building phenomenon and the impetus for, and rationale behind, the rise of tall buildings in the City of Adelaide. It identified their location, clients and functions as well as their morphology (layout), materials, and construction methods. The research also investigated the streetscape and skyline impact of Adelaide's tall buildings, their influence on the City of Adelaide's spatial form and their relationship to the original plan of Adelaide.

Findings from the research are published as:
Collins, J., Ibels, A., Collins, S. and Garnaut, C. Adelaide rises from the plain: perspectives on the emergence of tall buildings in South Australias capital city, Australian Planner, vol 43, no 3, 24-33

Early findings of the research were summarised in:
Collins, J., Ibels, A., Collins, S. and Garnaut, C. (2004) Growing up: the rise of the multi-storey building in interwar Adelaide, in Town Talk, Proceedings of the 13th State History Conference, History Trust of South Australia, Adelaide

Funded internally by a divisional research performance fund grant

Image: Blueprint of AMP Building, King William Street, Adelaide by Woods, Bagot, Laybourne Smith and Irwin, 1934, Hurren Langman and James collection, S248



Years of significance: South Australian architecture during World War 1

War Memorial Griggs S167-64Christine Garnaut, Julie Collins and Alexander Ibels


This project addressed the absence of scholarly studies of Australian architectural history in relation to the years of the Great War 1914-18, and questioned the conventional wisdom that the period was one in which architectural activity was suspended while architects either went to war or grappled with the constraints of wartime shortages. It drew on journals of the period notably The Salon and its successor Architecture and Building, as well as primary archival materials - architects' drawings, correspondence, notebooks and photographs held in the Architecture Museum's collections, as well as newspapers and other published sources. Items identified as being designed and/or built in South Australia during the study period were compiled in a database available in the Museum.

Findings from the research are published as:
Collins, J., Ibels, A. and Garnaut, C. (2005) Years of significance: South Australian architecture and the Great War, Journal of the Historical Society of South Australia, no 33, 25-39.

Funded internally by a divisional research performance fund grant

Image: Pencil sketch of War Memorial, North Terrace, Adelaide by Harold Griggs, c.1930, Griggs collection S197/64



External clients' projects

External users' research topics are numerous and include individual architects, builders, engineers, buildings, building types, building materials and house histories.

Example

Historian Bill Stacy undertook a major study into the life and career of Frank Hurren using the Architecture Museum's extensive collection of Hurren, Langman and James engineering drawings and related records.

He subsequently published:
Stacy, B. (2005) A Mad Scramble: Frank Emery Hurren, consulting structural engineer, Journal of the Historical Society of South Australia, no 33, 87-101.

 

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