Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Brutalist Enclave in a Sydney Suburb

UTS Kuring-gai. Photo ©Darren Bradley
The architect stated that the natural landscape was so beautiful, it should not have been built on. But he did it anyway. And I'm very glad he did. 

UTS Kuring-gai
Photo ©Darren Bradley
This brutalist school is built to complement the beautiful bushland granite cliffs that it sits on, and does a nice job of it. 
This facade really only ever sees the sun during the longest summer days. I need to return to photograph it then. Photo ©Darren Bradley

Originally designed and built as a teacher's college, UTS Kuring-gai was designed principally by David Turner from 1968 through 1971, with Bruce Mackenzie as the landscape architect. It is one of the most beautiful, elegant examples of brutalist architecture you'll ever see. 

Photo ©Darren Bradley
The building is an architectural representation of the sandstone cliffs that it sits on. Photo ©Darren Bradley
So his goal was to make the building as compact as possible, and disturb the natural landscape as little as possible. 
Photo ©Darren Bradley
The campus is a series of sculptural cubes cascading down the hillside, connected by a series of terraces and bridges, with spiral staircases. 
Photo ©Darren Bradley
The green carpet and pink railings are original, and a nice contrast to the concrete. Photo ©Darren Bradley
Photo ©Darren Bradley
There is even one or two staircases that aren't spirals. Photo ©Darren Bradley
The project won a Sulman Award and is now heritage listed. Unfortunately, the school recently sold much of the surrounding land to a developer, who is building an enormous retirement home around it.
Photo ©Darren Bradley


Boo said...

Great photos! Thank you.

MIKE said...

I was a student on campus in the 70s & 80s when it was bussing and had a unique feel. It was as monolith village similar to an Italian hill town. Went there on it's last day as an active university being decommissioned. It was rather sad seeing the life drained from it.

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