From the National President

14 July

Over the past month, the chapter Architecture Awards presentation events have taken place across the country.

Whether channelling Las Vegas in Melbourne, or adding a touch of red in Brisbane, each awards night was a fitting celebration for the best of our profession.

I extend congratulations to all state award winners.

While no one trend has emerged this year, the scope of the award winners is again impressive. Projects that were honoured range from small pro-bono projects to large infrastructure works; in the regions, the cities, the suburbs; from sole practitioners to the largest practices – all are well represented among the winners.

What is constant though is the high standard of work that our members are doing. Each award winning project is shaping Australia’s architectural landscape in unique, bold and sustainable ways.

I had the privilege of attending a few of the presentations, and had the pleasure of speaking with members, industry associates and colleagues. These occasions are so important –to be able to promote architecture of this standard to peers, to government and to the community  goes to the heart of the Institute’s awards program. It celebrates the vision, talent and tenacity of architects through recognition of their work. It presents an opportunity for public and peer recognition and also provides the Institute with a valuable mechanism to promote Australian architects and the value of their work locally, nationally and internationally.

Chapter award winners will now progress to the National Architecture Awards which will be presented in Darwin on 6 November.

I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the chapters for coordinating these fantastic awards programs. The awards presentations are only part of the story. There is of course a lot of work that goes in to each of the state awards – in some cases, a year in the making.

Late last month, I attended the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Convention in Chicago (or ChicAIAgo). Attended by 20,000 delegates, this event is off the scale as far as annual industry conferences are concerned.

I had the opportunity to speak about our Institute’s activities to the presidents of other architects’ institutes, both informally as well as in a formal International Presidents Forum.  It is interesting to hear the common concerns of architects around the world despite our cultural and economic differences.

Attending the convention gave me first hand exposure to how close our relationship is with many international institutes and how the exchange of information and ideas is of value to all of us.  I was also very proud to witness the very high regard that other institutes have for the Australian Institute of Architects.

The AIA convention was also an opportunity to speak informally to our international colleagues about our bid to host the 2020 UIA Congress in Melbourne, which we present officially in Durban next month.

I look forward to telling you more about the bid next time.




David Karotkin
National President