2018 NSW Student Architecture Awards

The NSW Chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects announced on Friday 2 March 2018 the winners in its revamped 2018 NSW Student Architecture Awards, recognising the best student work completed in the last year from the four accredited schools of architecture in NSW.

NSW Graduate Medal
supported by Mirvac Design

Beneath the Surface: Taking the Waters in Moree Andrew Hannah-Davies | The University of Newcastle

Beneath The Surface, Taking in the Waters in Moree by Andrew Hannah-Davies takes us on a social, physical and ethereal journey of healing. It is a bold demolition of the old, cleansing away the negative karma of the past via the acknowledgement of that past, and a poetic reconstruction of the new. It is an imaginative, passionate, response in its use of iconography, collective memory, physicality, materiality, form and landscape.  It creates a highly transcendent, experiential narrative through the use of drawings, models, animation and text that communicates the author’s intensity of feeling and conceptual framework. Social injustice and commentary are not the sole generator of the project but so too is a desire to demonstrate how the built environment has the potential to create new relationships, foster community and rejuvenate society spiritually as well as physically.

NSW Undergraduate Medal
supported by Bates Smart

Between Anchors Connie He | The University of Sydney

Between Anchors is a project rich in complexities which are distilled into an architectural proposition of captivating beauty. It has reimagined The Domain as a landscape for discussion, display and performance by celebrating the non-linear and favouring playful discovery. Through rigorous analysis and explorations of threshold, boundary, programme and materiality, a choreographed landscape unfolds to reveal a collection of analytical and interpretive architectural encounters. Stumble upon performers and be entertained on warm concrete bleachers in the winter sun. Take to the stage at Threshold 2.6.1F and become a lunchtime comedian. Meander through the Permanent Art Space and be mesmerised by shifting skies rolling over the truncated volumes of the galleries. Careful consideration of siting in conjunction with programmatic and spatial intersections generates a taxonomy of architectural propositions which encapsulate the nuances of site and public experience. The proposal has not been overwhelmed by the open-ended parameters of site; instead Between Anchors introduces a built scale most suitable for the given programme. Its strength lies not in its monumentality but in its ability to entertain and entice patrons through subtlety and the unexpected. Between Anchors skilfully addresses a spatially complex brief with elegance and rigour – a well deserved NSW Undergraduate Medal winner.

NSW Undergraduate Medal – Commendation

Bodies/Ground Miriam Osburn | The University of Sydney

The jury was greatly impressed by Osburn’s intricate approach to the design and to the site. Masterful consideration was given to both the spatial experience of the user as well as the balance between program requirements and impact to the site and broader surroundings. Her understated approach to the design of this public building enthralled the judges, while her communication and presentation of her design and its ideas were very clear and captivating. Well done.

NSW Undergraduate Medal – Commendation

Jazz Garden Brennan Clody | The University of Sydney

The Jazz Garden demonstrates an architectural language that is sophisticated and well researched. Various influences are drawn into the research process, including; Jørn Utzon’s Kingo Houses, the structure and counterpoint of Jazz, and the performance potential, both symbolic and actual, of architecture itself. Through various forms of mapping, the research has taken a journey along an abstract narrative that has informed the final outcome and form, without losing sight of the starting point. In the final proposal we can see; the ghost of Utzon in the approach to materiality and sensitive treatment of site, the spirit of Jazz in the playful disruption of elements, and the hand of the designer in the well-mannered realization of the whole.

NSW Architectural Communication Award
supported by Rothelowman

Jazz Garden Brennan Clody | The University of Sydney

A complex and layered design process was communicated in a remarkably simple and unpretentious manner that allowed the depth of thought and resolution in the design to shine through. This was a very complete and consistent presentation; from verbal presentation through to sketches, drawings, model and delightful black and white vignettes that captured the poetics of space. The drawings were textured and nuanced, with careful consideration of what to show, and what to leave out. The design process was well described and was pulled together as a narrative with minimal but relevant text. The verbal presentation in particular was professional and wellrehearsed, showing us the importance of using the ‘performance’ to capture the jury’s attention.

NSW Architectural Technologies Award
supported by Turner

Reh-zophora Melinda Barbagallo & Francesca Capicchioni | University of Technology Sydney

Reh-zophora by Melinda Barbagallo and Francesca Capicchioni embraces technological innovation as a means to shift society towards more sustaining and sustainable futures. Located at the mouth of the Prosperine River adjacent to the Great Barrier Reef, the project targets the problem of eutrophication through the extraction, treatment and repurposing of algae for food and medicine. Through a detailed investigation of systems for harvesting and filtering algae, and an interrogation of the aesthetic opportunities of their display, technology and architecture are combined in a performative landscape of mechanical pillars. A complex system of column typologies and variations address the various functional requirements of algae treatment, water catchment and bird habitat, while simultaneously offering diverse experiences for human habitation. The manipulation of the ground plane as a (literally) fluid terrain variously expands and contracts the territory available for occupation by different species throughout the day. The deliberate blurring of technological and natural landscapes is echoed in the overlaying of finely detailed technical drawings with washes of muted colour. This is an alluring project, that skillfully synthesises conceptual and technical ambitions in an articulate and refined architectural proposition.


The University of New South Wales
supported by fjmt

  • James Masman – Graduate of the Year (Master’s program)
  • William Maynard – Graduate of the Year (Bachelor’s program)
  • Mengying Li – History & Theory Prize
  • Jason Cheung – Construction & Practice Prize

The University of Technology Sydney
supported by Crone

  • Eric Ye – Graduate of the Year (Master’s program) 
  • Michael Northey – Graduate of the Year (Bachelor’s program)
  • Michael Bennett – History & Theory Prize
  • Rhiannon Brownbill – Construction & Practice Prize

The University of Newcastle
supported by EJE architecture       

  • Andrew Hannah Davies – Graduate of the Year (Master’s Program)
  • Arhem Ashton – Graduate of the Year (Bachelor’s Program)          
  • Eliza Maartensz – History & Theory Prize
  • Sabrina Wan Muhammad Kamal – Construction & Practice Prize

The University of Sydney
supported by Jacobs

  • Mr Kingsley May – Graduate of the Year (Master’s program)                             
  • Mr Luke Hannaford – Graduate of the Year (Bachelor’s program)
  • Mr Ben Charlton – History & Theory Prize
  • Miss Emily Flanagan – Construction & Practice Prize

2018 NSW Student Architecture Awards Jury:

  • Andrew Nimmo (Jury Chair) – NSW Chapter President
  • Ceridwen Owen – University of Tasmania
  • Michael Wiener – Mirvac Design
  • Emmy Omagari – Bates Smart
  • Phuong Le – co-chair of the NSW Emerging Architects + Graduates Network

2018 NSW Student Architecture Awards – Program Partners

  • NSW Graduate Medal: Mirvac Design
  • NSW Undergraduate Medal: Bates Smart
  • NSW Architectural Communication Award: Rothelowman
  • NSW Architectural Technologies Award: Turner
  • NSW University Prizes: Crone (UTS); EJE Architecture (University of Newcastle); FJMT (UNSW); Jacobs (University of Sydney)



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