ARCHITECTURE DESIGN STUDIO COLLABORATION RMIT
'the lake project'
May sees, not only the delights of autumn, but also the response to place by an RMIT cohort in architecture.
In March, led by Claire Scorpo and Nic Agius, 14 architecture students came to Beeac to prod and ponder the notion of (this) place – their brief was site specific, they were not wandering but specifically wondering – what happens in this place, what is it made of, who lives here and why, what kind of buildings do they inhabit and why, what do they do here, who was here before them and why, and when, and what did they do.
These budding architects are out of the their comfort zone, to compensate possibly, they strut, a la colonial, enter where they should not, unaware of local lores and manners, checking things out … then comes a very precious moment … by a lake, pond, freshwater source – a rare and essential location in a locale of salt lakes and craters, thorn bush, rock outcrops and little else … they wake …
This is their story – as the line goes – what do they find, what do they feel, how do they respond to invading this land, plotting some landmark, digging a hole …
dreaming, their owndreams, not owning dreams but light, visions, of what might lightly sit in a precious location, by a lake, a crazy lake, sometimes there, sometimes not, a chimera … like their impetus a vision …
this is their vision: Lucinda Clark
Geema Maddumage Don
Discover what they see, in their mind’s eye, in response to country, in response to local kindness, local lore, local culture …
“The (design) studio aims to foster arelationship with the local community and draw upon local context past and present to develop a brief + funding strategy for a short stay residential artist retreat/research post.
Students will unpack and understand the history of the area through the lens of a specific material component (stone, concrete, brick, timber or steel.). This will then form an integral part of their small scale design response as they develop a tectonic agenda to their material, the site, its history and the project brief.”
The students spend a weekend in Beeac where they immerse themselves in the town, meet with localpeople, gather first hand research through measured drawings, personal reflection, and site observation.
The (resultant) exhibition is a series of investigative studies of the town and a fragment of their design response to the site.
This doesn’t often happen – that focused professions leave their safe place and venture out – this is an exciting insight into what young designers make of the country, specifically out west, specifically BEEAC.