Hosted over 12 jam-packed days, the Dulux Study Tour 2022 invited 10 of Australia’s most promising emerging architects to expand their personal understandings of architecture – the modes of practice, contexts and cultures that influence the built environment. Visiting more than 25 sites, as well as 8 practices, across Tasmania, Sydney and Darwin, the tour provided insight into the many ways that architecture is produced across the country, with environmentally responsive and place-based design emerging as a shared quality between regions. To finalise the tour, this year’s participants have collated a ‘highlights’ reel of their most memorable moments on tour. Here, we share just a snapshot of what resonated most from another unforgettable year of the Dulux Study Tour.
The experience of approaching Krakani Lumi – Wukalina by Taylor and Hinds Architects, for me, set the tone for the remainder of the Dulux Study Tour. The Welcome to Country, guided by palawa man Cody Gangell, provided a much needed mental reset, separating my time on tour from the rigour and rush of everyday life.
My favourite moment of the Tour was an event, rather than a building. The smoking ceremony at Krakani Lumi, performed by local guide Cody Gangell, represented a ritual cleansing of the site and formed part of our welcome to the land upon which we now stood. After the high energy experience of being transported by small plane and helicopter that morning, the ceremony had a deliberately slow pace that provided a palpable feeling of calm and unified our newly-formed group.
Dinner at Faro, which took place at MONA, on our last night in Tasmania, was one of my favourite moments on the Dulux Study Tour. The tone of the trip had already been set in the preceding days with an extraordinary range of experiences and I felt that at this meal, reflecting on everything we had already seen together, there was a real sense of cohesion amongst the group. The overlay of a unique dining experience, great conversation and full immersion art installations perfectly captured what is so great about the Dulux Study Tour and heightened our anticipation of what was to come.
I was drawn to the Dulux Study Tour to experience architecture in different places and cultures. While our travel was kept within Australia’s borders this year, the experience in Kakadu was rich with culture in a way that was unexpected and enlightening. The absence of architecture provided a chance to reflect on our role as architects and how we can respond to place, climate, and First Nations culture with respect and authenticity.
A moment that stands out to me from the Dulux Study Tour was when we first entered Glebe House by Chenchow Little – I was instantly filled with joy. Every surface was occupied by art, children’s creations and homework lists, sitting effortlessly side by side. The sculptural architecture was not only beautiful but also supported and celebrated the young family’s daily life. Glebe House is a special example of how architects can challenge standard spatial arrangements for living to design unique homes that support families to thrive.
I wasn’t prepared for a project I was so familiar with through photographs to take me so completely by surprise. Located on Bruny Island, John Wardle’s Shearer’s Quarters and Captain Kelly’s Cottage are yin and yang, new and old, singular and composite. Together they are enchanting, forensic and inventive, offering spaces for shelter, gathering and making amongst a rugged and expansive landscape.
A standout project visit of the Dulux Study Tour was John Wardle’s ‘Shearer’s Quarters’ on Bruny Island, Tasmania. There is always a danger in visiting such iconic and highly awarded architecture – in that expectations are extremely high. In this case, every moment on site was filled with delight, as the in-person visit revealed much more than can be conveyed in plans and photographs. It is an exceptional and experiential building – the quality of the light, scent of the timber and finely grained detail left a strong and lasting impression.
John Wardle’s Shearers Quarters, Captain Kelly’s cottage, and the surrounding site projects are a remarkable aggregation of history, artisanal craft, learning through making and rigorous architectural design – all set within an extraordinarily scenic location. In guiding us through these projects, John generously shared his time, his unmistakable enthusiasm for the site, and his commitment to design process, practice and culture. These themes of generosity in hospitality and conversation and a passion for architecture converged in this project visit and continued throughout the course of the Dulux Study Tour.
One of the most memorable parts of the Dulux Study Tour was visiting Adam Haddow’s rooftop apartment. Adam’s thriving native garden and off-form concrete interiors were incredibly beautiful. However, it was Adam’s reflections that were particularly inspiring. Through his own projects, Adam is constantly questioning and challenging notions of “home”. When asked about his home, Adam explained that they currently use 40% percent of their apartment, 60% of the time and 60% only 40% of the time. As a result, Adam is reconceptualising a new home would be 40% of the current apartment’s size while the remaining 60% would be reconfigured as a bedsit apartment for visiting parents and a ground floor food and beverage venue included to cater for large family lunches. Adam’s investigation into new modes of habitation is very clever and something I will carry into my future practice.