The Australia portion of the Murcutt/Australia 2012 studio is already coming to a close. the first two days were spent with Glenn touring some of his ‘breakthrough’ projects outside Sydney including the Simpson/Lee House, The Boyd Center and the Walsh House.
On day three we crammed into the two vans and headed six hours north to Glenn’s farm near Kempsey for the two week intensive design studio. The farm consists of pastureland and pond as well as the Marie Short House (designed by Glenn for the Shorts in 1974 and purchased by him in 1980), an existing cottage, an existing shed that Glenn converted to a guest house and several other farm buildings. The Short House provides housing for faculty and female students, the cottage accommodates the guys and the guest house has been transformed into a beautifully daylit design studio.
Upon arrival at the farm we set up shop and toured the project site the following day. The site is the historic Trial Bay Gaol (jail) on a spectacular point overlooking the Trial Bay and ocean about 40 minutes north of the farm.
The assigned project is the adaptive re-use of the jail into artist-in-residence studios, exhibit spaces and theater. Design work has moved swiftly with studio meeting five days a week from 10 am to anywhere from 6 to 8 pm with an hour break for lunch. Glenn expects to see new work at every session and our final pin-up in Australia is tomorrow. The coffee is flowing!
Rick Mohler is a principal of Adams Mohler Ghillino Architects in Seattle and an Associate Professor of Architecture at the University of Washington. Professor Mohler teaches both introductory and advanced graduate design studios and advises master’s thesis students. He has been involved in civic, community and professional organizations including the Madrona Community Council, the Downtown Project Review Panel for the CAP Initiative, and Seattle AIA awards programs.