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Revealed: Adjaye and Chipperfield’s entries for £150m Adelaide gallery

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Images have been released of the designs by the six shortlisted teams in the international contest for a £150 million contemporary art gallery in Adelaide 

The never-before-seen concepts for the 15,000m2 offshoot of the city’s world-famous Art Gallery of South Australia include visions by Adjaye Associates and David Chipperfield Architects.

Chosen from more than 107 submissions in December, the UK practices are up against BIG, New York’s Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Melbourne’s Hassell in the two-stage Adelaide Contemporary contest, organised by Malcolm Reading Consultants

The estimated £150 million project will create a new 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 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.

The competition attracted 107 entries, representing more than 525 individual firms hailing from five continents with more than a third based in Australia. Less than a 10th of entries came from the United Kingdom while more than a fifth were US based.

Australian arts supremo Michael Lynch, chair of the jury and the Art Gallery of South Australia Board’s newly appointed special adviser, said: ‘This is one of the most important sites in Adelaide, and a landmark project that could set the city’s compass for the next few decades, so we’re delighted to reveal six possible futures from some of the most exciting and accomplished design teams in the world.

‘Commissioning outstanding architecture is a way Adelaide can say to the world what a fantastic, dynamic city we have, and how deeply creativity is woven into our DNA. We have the art to put in the building; we have the appetite and momentum to make this happen.’

Competition director Malcolm Reading said: ‘These proposals are all highly sophisticated. Some are more dramatic, some more subtle, but all announce a destination and tantalise with the promise of an experience that is out of the ordinary.

‘The winning design will be developed in close partnership with Arts South Australia and other stakeholders.’

The six finalist teams will receive AU£90,000 (£54,000) for their work and their designs in the competition which is endorsed by the Australian Institute of Architects. 

An overall winner is expected to be announced later in the year.

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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