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Adjaye and Chipperfield on stellar shortlist for £150m Adelaide gallery

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Adjaye Associates and David Chipperfield Architects are among six teams shortlisted in the international contest for a landmark £150 million contemporary art gallery in Adelaide

The UK practices were chosen from more than 107 teams which entered the Art Gallery of South Australia-backed competition. Other shortlisted teams include BIG, New York’s Diller Scofidio + Renfro and HASSELL from Melbourne.

The two-stage contest, organised by Malcolm Reading Consultants, will select a team for the Adelaide Contemporary, a 15,000m2 offshoot of the city’s world-famous Art Gallery of South Australia.

The estimated £150 million project will create a landmark destination for contemporary art on the city’s North Terrace boulevard, close to the parent gallery and botanic gardens. An outdoor sculpture park and a Gallery of Time exploring Aboriginal, European and Asian art and culture will also be included.

The shortlist announcement comes less than a month after a team led by David Adjaye, Ron Arad and Gustafson Porter + Bowman won the MRC-organised contest for a £40 million national Holocaust memorial next to the Palace of Westminster.

Art Gallery of South Australia director Nick Mitzevich said: ‘This is an extraordinarily rich list of diverse creative partnerships of architects looking to complement their talents by working with both peers and smaller talented practices. The final decision was very demanding but these are the teams that convinced us through the outstanding quality of their submissions.

‘There is a strong thread of Australian professional expertise running through the entire list with Australians taking both equal and collaborative positions.

‘The six teams all showed a strong connection with Adelaide – and understood that our aim is not to create an off-the-peg architectural icon but a piece of Adelaide, an entity that will be sustainable and polymathic in the way it enhances the social, cultural and architectural fabric of the city.’

Malcolm Reading, competition director, said: ‘It is inspiring to see how architects have taken collaboration to heart. If there is any sure route to creating today’s sophisticated cultural buildings then it is by selecting a team that prizes flair and cooperation.

‘We are extremely grateful to all those who entered the competition and hope the experience will help them in their future practice.

‘Now we look to stage two of the competition and the brief for this unique art destination, which asks for a memorable building, physically and emotionally woven into the place and community. The teams have sixteen weeks to produce their designs and these will go on show to the public in April 2018.’

The new building will be constructed on the site of the former Royal Adelaide Hospital, which is on the traditional lands of the region’s indigenous Kaurna people.

The surrounding area is considered rich in Kaurna heritage, and the competition brief encourages the participation of local producers, entrepreneurs and businesses.

Representing more than 525 individual firms, the 107 applicants hailed from five continents with the majority of more than a third based in Australia. Less than a tenth of entries came from the United Kingdom while more than a fifth were US based.

The six finalists will now receive AU£90,000 (£54,000) each to participate in the competition’s second stage which is endorsed by the Australian Institute of Architects.

The jury will be chaired by Australian arts supremo Michael Lynch and the shortlisted teams designs will feature in an exhibition in April. An overall winner will be announced in mid-June.

The full shortlist

  • Adjaye Associates (London, UK) and BVN (Sydney, Australia)
  • BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group (Copenhagen, Denmark) and JPE Design Studio (Adelaide, Australia)
  • David Chipperfield Architects (London, UK) and SJB Architects (Sydney, Australia)
  • Diller Scofidio + Renfro (New York, USA) and Woods Bagot (Adelaide, Australia)
  • HASSELL (Melbourne, Australia) and SO-IL (New York, USA)
  • Khai Liew (Adelaide, Australia), Office of Ryue Nishizawa (Tokyo, Japan) and Durbach Block Jaggers (Sydney, Australia)


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Readers' comments (1)

  • small note: if AU£90,000 is the unique compensation for a 16 weeks commitment, this sounds a money loss for each of the participants that won't win, unless they work only with interns.

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