superstudio 2021

the brief

Evolving identity

“Identity is never static, always in the making and never made.”
– Anon

“Being a fish out of water is tough but that is how you evolve”
– Kumail Nanjiani

This year’s vision coincides with the 90th anniversary of the Australian
Institute of Architects. As stated by Alice Hampson, the Institute’s National

President, “…we’ll be looking back on how Australian architecture has

shaped our cities and communities and looking forwards to the bright future

for architects and the built environments throughout Australia and beyond.

We will reflect on what we’ve learnt, what we’ve come to value and what

remains to be done.”.

2021 SUPERSTUDIO WINNERS

2021 Superstudio national winners congratulations Angela xu and thomas li

Congratulations to the national winners of SuperStudio 2021, Angela Xu and Thomas Li, currently in their third year at The University of Sydney for their submission, Sedimentary Fabrics

 

The clothes we wear are more than just pieces of fabric for keeping warm. They mould to our bodies, like skin, shaping our personal identity. It changes the world’s view of us and our view of the world. What we propose unites past and present, to invite a future that celebrates the fluidity of identity. The sites we have chosen are abandoned industrial spaces across Sydney, that have not only become a neglection of land, but also our heritage and cultural identity.

Our design blends architecture with sculpture, inviting the community to bring a part of themselves, their clothes, to partake in an act of collaboration and sharing. We provide a tectonic cable-frame that occupies the husks of these existing buildings. This allows the garments to be hooked on or released by visitors. Over time, the space warps according to the collective input from the community. It becomes a process of giving and accepting, an anonymity that opens a conversation across racial divides. The celebration here lies not within your culture, but through the acceptance of another. Clothes can be expressive yet nameless, gathering to form a collage, blurring the barriers of societal categorisation, exalting the essence of the self.

 

2021 SUPERSTUDIO creative directors

 The creative team is also responsible for developing the brief,  curating the design inspiration talks and deciding the National winner of SuperStudio.  

SUSAN ANG

Associate Head (International) of School of Architecture and Built Environment, Deakin University 

Susan was a registered practicing architect in Geelong, Melbourne and Byron Bay for 15 years before entering academia where she is in her 23rd year of teaching, research and academic leadership. 

Through her teaching and research Susan is a champion of socially consciousness architecture, inclusive design and inter-professional education.  Susan is the Founder and Consortium Chair of Intercultural Dialogue Through Design (iDiDe est.2010) – Sustainable Rural Built Environments (SRBE est.2019), a global community design study tour that acts as a collaborative education platform and research network consisting of students, researchers, academics, and industry professionalsThe iDiDe-SRBE Consortium is particularly vested in meaningful engagement in participatory design with vulnerable and underrepresented communities around the world and addressing the imbalances between rural and urban environments and orientating these concerns towards achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. 

(Wei) Wei Yap, Ooi

Principal, HAYBALL Architecture 

Wei is a Principal at HAYBALL, and he leads practice-based research and design. With over 20 years of architectural practice experience, Wei has worked on prominent award-winning public and private sector projects of varying scales across Australia and Southeast Asia. Currently, Wei serves as a Jury for the AIA International Chapter ‘s 2021 International Chapter Architecture Awards. During his undergraduate years, Wei was the recipient of the University Medal from the University of Newcastle, the NSW AIA Graduate Prize and was the second recipient of the AIA Student Prize for the Advancement of Architecture in 2000. 

design day Talks

Participants of Super Studio and all design students are invited to attend Super Studio Design Day Talks. 
These presentations are an opportunity for students to dive deeper into the themes of the Super Studio brief, spark creativity and connect with other students and design professionals. 

Evolving Identities – A discussion with Dr Samantha Ratnam, Leader of Victorian Greens

Samantha is the MLC for Northern Metropolitan and the Leader of the Victorian Greens. Prior to entering the Victorian Parliament, Samantha was a social worker for over 15 years and also spent five years as a Councillor at the City of Moreland, where she was elected the first Greens Mayor of Moreland in 2015.  

Samantha discusses her personal migration journey and how the process of migration and change have helped to shape her identity. In this discussion Samantha also reflects on how differences in the built environment can influence the sense of who you are, how you relate to your community and your sense of well being. 

Evolving Identities – A discussion with Luke Hayward 

Luke is an Australian architect and Japanese 1st-class Kenchikushi, Architect and Building Engineer. Through his practice, atelier Luke, he collaborates closely with clients and local craftspeople to create uniquely personalised and culturally sensitive designs in both Australia and Japan.

Luke will reflect on the role of empathy in architectural practice when operating across cultures and borders. He will also examine the ways identity is defined and evolved by context and events

Evolving Identities – A discussion with Dr Tyson Yunkaporta  

Dr Tyson Yunkaporta is an Author, academic, educator, Indigenous thinker, maker (traditional wood carving), arts critic, researcher, poet. Apalech clan (west cape) with ties in the south, born-country is Melbourne and adoptive and community/cultural ties all over, from Western NSW to Perth.

In this presentation our Creative Directors Susan Ang and Wei Yap Ooi discuss the theme of the SuperStuio brief, evolving identities. Tyson shares stories of personal identity and his perspectives on evolving identity and what this means to him.  

Evolving Identities – A discussion with Kieran Wong 

Kieran is a co-founder and Partner at TheFulcrum.Agency, a creative consultancy that leverages community and social outcomes through evidenced-based design strategy, advocacy and research

Kieran discusses in particular how the practice has started to re think the work they do in community housing and infrastructure and strengthening the ways the practice connects to community. Thinking about what does practice mean not just in the professional sense but practice as an individual. 
Kieran shares advice for participants of SuperStudio on managing ideas to tackle the competition brief. 

Evolving Identities – A discussion with Dr Gary Presland and Professor Mel Dodd 

Dr Gary Presland
Over a 25-year period, Gary held positions as an archaeologist, historian, archivist and museum curator in the Victorian Public Service. He is a prize-winning author of nine books on aspects of Melbourne’s history.   

Gary discusses  the intricate ways in which  identity (in both Aboriginal and colonial settler society) is connected to ‘place’, and how they differ so markedly from each other and also how elements of Melbourne’s landscapes features were regarded in vastly dissimilar ways, through disparate cultural frameworks. 

Prof. Mel Dodd
Mel Dodd has led architecture at a range of Universities in London and Melbourne, and is currently Professor and Head of Department of Architecture at MADA, Monash University. Responsible for pedagogy that bridges the gap between the academic institution, the profession, and wider society, her practice-based research critically engages with urban place-making as evidenced in her recent publication ‘Spatial Practices: Modes of Action and Engagement with the City (Routledge 2020). Mel sits on the Architecture Committee for the Royal Academy of Arts, and is an Adjunct Professor at Central Saint Martins in London.

superstudio 2020

the brief

“Though we have all encountered our share of grief and troubles, we can still hold the line of beauty, form, and beat – no small accomplishment in a world as challenging as this one. Hard times require furious dancing. Each of us is the proof.”

Alice Walker [Footnote: Alice Walker, Hard Times Require Furious Dancing: New Poems, Novato, California: New World Library, 2010, xv]

The extreme events of the past year cannot be ignored. Landscapes have been violently damaged by bushfire, drought, water and wind. It is clear that climate change has not registered our state borders, even though we suddenly have. The empty streets of lockdown have swelled with the massive collectivism of global protest movements, only to empty again. Industrial explosions have destroyed an ancient living sacred site in our country and have devastated an entire city in another.

Meanwhile, many of us are experiencing the intense self-awareness of our own bodies like we never have before, re-inhaling breath trapped by a face mask, monitoring everything we touch, and measuring our distance from others. From our homes, the local and international become conflated on our news feed, especially when many of us aren’t allowed to visit the other side of our
own city or the next town over.

2020 SuperStudio Winner

Congratulations to Caleb Lee & Nithya Ranasisinghe

Our team immediately recalled the devastating Beirut port explosion in August, streets littered with shattered glass, possessions and paraphernalia strewn on the ground like trash – compounding Lebanon’s waste problem. We critiqued this year’s brief to be respectful of place. In order to be considerate, we strongly believed that we needed to be knowledgeable too. Thus we began the project by questioning the systems, culture, history and how would those indirectly affected resonate with this tragedy?

Under quarantine, the sphere in which we experience space has condensed yet conflated. Objects that surround us suddenly have a profound influence in how we act. Building upon the idea of lost possessions and sustainability, our team was interested in how material transmutation of objects affect our behaviour. What if we woke up and all our possessions were made from glass? Would we value them as much as our memorabilia? What would we be willing to discard?

Those who have been through trauma tend to gravitate towards rituals of consistency and routine, aspects found in religion. Therefore, we believed that a built outcome was not the answer to grief. We saw an opportunity to address Lebanon’s pre-existing problems surrounding waste disposal. Resonating with this year’s theme of “renewal”, we sought to propose a gradually dissipating ceremony, in a domestic setting to empathize with those in grief.

2021 SUPERSTUDIO creative directors

 The creative team is also responsible for developing the brief,  curating the design inspiration talks and deciding the National winner of SuperStudio.  

CAMERON BRUHN

Professor Cameron Bruhn is the Head of the School of Architecture at The University of Queensland. He starts his new role after being associated with the school for twenty years, beginning his bachelors in 1998. He has been the editorial director of Architecture Media for nearly a decade and has worked as an adjunct professor at UQ for the past two years.

Claire Humphreys

Claire Humphreys is a registered architect (ARBV) with more than a decade of experience in a number of award winning architectural practices. She is currently working on projects in both Melbourne and Brisbane.

In addition to Claire’s architectural practice, she has presented at talks and forums and has been an invited guest critic and tutor at a number of universities.

SuperStudio Winners

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