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At Home With the Architect Visits An Australian Modern Classic


This month the Australian Architecture Association invites you to take a step back into the mid-twentieth century with a visit to the Johnson House, designed by architect Peter (Richard Norman) Johnson (1923-2003).

The family home of Peter, his wife Jane and sons Chris, Tim and Simon, the Johnson House won the Wilkinson award for excellence in domestic architecture in 1964 and is regarded as a fine example of what has become known as the 'Sydney School'.


Peter Johnson was a founding partner of the award winning firm McConnel Smith and Johnson, noted for their designs of public buildings such as the Law Courts, Queens Square, the Sydney Water Board headquarters and the University of Sydney's law school and faculty of architecture buildings.

As a professor of architecture and head of school at the University of Sydney (1968-86), as well as chancellor at the University of Technology Sydney (1988-98), Peter Johnson had a profound influence on the careers of many an emerging architect.


The house will be presented on the day by Meredith Foley and Dominic Wilson, the proud owners, who bought the house after Peter passed away.

Date: Sunday 29 June 2014
House Location: Chatswood
Please note that the address will only be forwarded to ticket holders in the days immediately before the tour.
Tickets: $30 (early bird) / $40 (public) / $25 (AAA members)
Time: 11am - 12pm

Please note the Johnson House will only be open for one hour.

As a private residence this is a rare opportunity to experience a real design classic, don't miss out!

Book your place on the tour by clicking here.

  • Article: Vanessa Couzens
  • Photographs: Vanessa Couzens 2014




AAA Volunteers Wanted - Volunteer Recruitment Information Evening


Are you interested in becoming a volunteer? The AAA is holding a Volunteer Recruitment Information Evening at the Austral Design Studio, 6pm Thursday 22 May.

We have a small team of dedicated volunteers who range in age and experience, but share a high level of enthusiasm for architecture and design, people, and what happens in our built environment. Previous formal education on the subject of architecture is not necessary.

What do our volunteers do? AAA volunteers work directly to the Aim - promoting contemporary architecture and design to as many people as possible, and building architectural appreciation in the community.

These architecture enthusiasts broaden their knowledge through researching, learning and delivering tours, interpreting the buildings for participants.

Assistance is available with research, which sometimes includes meeting with the volunteer chair and other volunteer tour leaders to discuss the concept of a particular building.

We also meet regularly to discuss feedback on existing tours, share ideas on new tours and to socialize.

Want to know more about the training program? Sign up to come to the information night here!


At Home with the Architect

utzsanby2Due to the two consecutive long weekends at the end of April, the next 'At Home with the Architect' tour will be held this Sunday 4 May 2014

This weekend the AAA will open the doors of the Chatswood family home of Kristin Utz and Duncan Sanby, the husband and wife team at Utz Sanby Architects.

This award winning practice has focused on delivering high quality residential projects since 1994 after their broad experience in London and Hong Kong.

Their projects are all over Sydney, from Palm Beach to Maroubra and Alexandria to Hunters Hill and include inner-city alterations, work to heritage listed buildings, multiple housing, apartments, educational facilities and restaurant fit-outs as well as many new homes, beach houses and rural retreats. Projects outside of Sydney have been completed in Kangaroo Valley and Coffs Harbour and developed for clients in Fiji, Hamilton Island, Culburra and Mount Wilson.

AAA has opened many of their works over the years in our residential bus tours and now this is a chance to see how they design for themselves!

Subscribe to our e-Newsletter to stay tuned for our future program



Short Black: Architects In Their Space Talk

On Wednesday 7 May, the AAA presents a Short Black: Architects In Their Space talk by Chris Haughton of SHED Architects.


Featured on the evening will be the 1888 Hotel in Pyrmont, a heritage listed 90 bedroom boutique hotel, eatery, bar and event space in the 8Hotels collection.

Chris Haughton is the founder of SHED, an architecture office specialising in boutique developments and adaptive reuse of historic buildings in the Sydney city fringe.

Educated in the UK at Liverpool University, Chris relocated to Sydney in 1994 and was a senior member of the team at Hassell who delivered the Qantas Sydney Domestic Terminal. After gaining experience at the firms DCM and Arclinea, Chris established his own practice in 2003.


Don't miss out on this opportunity to experience the transformed former wool store / office as Chris explains how the 1888 Hotel project came about, was designed and constructed.

Numbers are limited. To avoid disappointment book early!

Time: 6.00pm
Date: Wednesday 7 May 2014
Location: 1888 Hotel, 139 Murray Street, Pyrmont NSW
Tickets: $40 (public) / $30 (AAA Members)

Click here to book your tickets.

  • Image 1: Chris Haughton in the 1888 Hotel
    Photographer: Shane Rozario
  • Image 2: The 1888 Hotel Foyer
    Photographer: Kata Bayer



Special Canon Photographic Walking Tour for AAA Members


Canon and the AAA are partnering on a special photographic walking tour for Australian Architecture Association members. On Saturday 12 April AAA members and a friend can explore, through the lens of a camera, the buildings and history of Circular Quay and The Rocks.


Enjoy a creative and instructional afternoon photographing the historic area, with advice on techniques and tips from Canon staff, as well as commentary on history and architecture by a AAA tour leader.

At the end of the tour participants are invited to adjourn to our post tour hosts, Customs House to print photographs and reflect on differing visions. Canon will be providing a great free giveaway to the best photography of the day of a Canon PowerShot S200BK digital camera.


Time: 2.00pm - 5.00pm
Date: Saturday 12 April 2014
Booking: AAA members only (each member may invite a friend)
Tickets: $15 (AAA member single) / $30 (AAA member and guest)
Equipment supplied by participants: 1 x SD memory card
Equipment supplied for the tour by Canon: Canon digital camera

Don't miss out! To be eligible to participate in the special Canon Photography Walking Tour and be in the running for Canon's great prize for the best photography of the day, tour attendees will need to register themselves on the Canon Rewards Program website.

Book your place on the tour by clicking here.


  • Article: Vanessa Couzens
  • Logo: provided by Canon
  • Image: photograph of the MCA by Vanessa Couzens with logo provided by Canon



At Home With the Architect - Second Open Home for 2014


Don't miss out on At Home With the Architect on Sunday 30 March. Discover Jorge Hrdina Architects' restoration, renovations and additions to 'Cossington', the childhood home of Australian artist Grace Cossington Smith.

Jorge Hrdina's practice is based on Sydney's lower north shore in McMahons Point. Jorge Hrdina Architects' architecture responds primarily to their client's needs and to the 'soul' of each unique, individual site and environment.


'Cossington', named after the great Australian female artist Grace Cossington Smith, who was brought up in Sydney and was a radically modern woman when women were not even allowed to vote, consists of a lovely Queen Anne style federation residence with a contemporary addition sensitively linked to the rear of the house.

House Location: Neutral Bay
Please note that the address will only be forwarded to ticket holders in the days immediately before the tour.
Tickets: $30 (early bird public) / $40 (public) / $25 (AAA members - quote your membership number in the promotional code)
Time: 11.00am - 1.00pm
Date: Sunday 30 March 2014

Numbers are limited so don't miss out! To book your place on the self drive tour click here.




At Home With the Architect - First Open Home for 2014



Don't miss out on the first At Home With the Architect for 2014. Take a step back in time and enjoy the Victorian charm of Mindaribba. The additions to and renovations of the Queen Anne style residence were designed by Hector Abrahams Architects.

Hector Abrahams has been working as an architect for over 26 years and established his own practice in 2012. Previously he was a partner with Clive Lucas Stapleton & Partners Pty Ltd.

Hector has a deep interest in the architecture of old places - the repair, conservation or sensitive changes to existing buildings and the addition of new buildings within existing precincts.

Hector Abrahams has revived 'Mindaribba's' character and functionality, all within the existing footprint. This is architecture of continuity not discontinuity. The very opposite of the ubiquitous black box.  The property is now able to function more effectively as a family household whilst still remaining within its original plan. Sustainability is embedded in the architecture approach of making an old house work well, without adding additional floor area.


Mindaribba is the recipient of two architecture awards and promises to be an interesting insight into the sensitive treatment of our historical built heritage.

House Location: Beecroft
Please note that the address will only be forwarded to ticket holders in the days immediately preceding the self drive tour.
Tickets: $30 (early bird) / $40 (public) / $25 (AAA members)
Time: 11am-1pm
Date: Sunday 23 February 2014

Numbers are limited so don't miss out! To book your place on the self drive tour, click here.


  • Images: provided by Hector Abrahams Architects
  • Photographer:  Emilio Cresciani



At Home With the Architect - 2013 In Review


June 2013 saw the introduction of a new addition to the Australian Architecture Association's program of Open House tours. The 'At Home With the Architect' self drive tour opened up a series of inspiring architect designed houses over a two hour period once a month. This years offering were all homes lived in by the architects who designed them.

The AAA would like to extend a very big thankyou to the designers and their families who welcomed us into their personal spaces, as well as the design enthusiasts who attended the opens.

Featured in 'At Home With the Architect' over 2013 were:

JUNE 2013: Sam Crawford Architects - Sam Crawford & Jane Crawford's Stanmore Residence


JULY 2013: Welsh + Major Architects - David Welsh & Christine Major's Forest Lodge Residence


AUGUST 2013: Annalisa Capurro - Russell & Pamela Jack's Residence


SEPTEMBER 2013: Drew Heath Architects - McMahons Point Residence


OCTOBER 2013: Carone Dolan Design - George Carone & Bridget Dolan's Queens Park Residence


NOVEMBER 2013: Chris Elliott Architects -  Bronte Residence


The 'At Home With the Architect' series of open houses will begin again in February 2014. We look forward to seeing you!


  • Article: Vanessa Couzens
  • Photographer: Vanessa Couzens



Great Discounts on Memberships, Walks, Tours and Merchandise for 2014


DONATE NOW and show you want the AAA to continue to run it's extensive program of walks, tours and talks in 2014. We REWARD your generosity with fabulous discounts on a whole host of goodies. Don't miss out!

We are only a third of the way there in our aim to raise $15000 to fund our operations in 2014. With only a couple of weeks to go on the campaign we need you to show the love!

This is an all or nothing campaign - if we don't make target we don't redeem your pledges and you don't get the goodies! So urge your friends, family and acquaintances to support the AAA and enjoy the fantastic REWARDS on offer for 2014.


Want to know more about the Australian Architecture Association? Click here to visit the AAA website campaign page to learn more. Or simply go straight to the Pozible fundraising site and find the perfect REWARD today. With Christmas just around the corner the great discounts on offer will give you a head start on gifts for the design enthusiasts in your life.


Book Now For the Final AAA Open House: At Home With the Architect For 2013


This month 'At Home With the Architect' features 'Seacliff House' the 2013 Sydney Design Award winning home of architect Chris Elliot. Our Open House happens a little earlier this month on Sunday 17 November. Book now to get your early bird discount.

Seacliff House was designed for a family of four, the architect's own, and offered an opportunity to experiment with ideas. It's carved white exterior is a highlight of the famous Bondi to Coogee Coastal Walk.

Designed with the perculiarities of the site rather than struggling against them and a sliver of land, set against the vast Australian sea, the long north and south elevations are moulded with apertures to control light, privacy and views.


Since it's establishment in 1992, Chris Elliot Architects has received a slew of prestigious design awards and been featured in numerous design publications. Their work includes residential and commercial projects and a special interest in large scale architectural and urban design.

House Location: Bronte
Please note that the address will only be forwarded to ticket holders in the days immediately before the tour.
Tickets: $30 (early bird) / $40 (public) / $25 (AAA members)
Time: 11am - 1pm
Date: Sunday 17 November

Numbers are limited so don't miss out! To book your place on the self drive tour click here.


Want to get your  tickets early for 'At Home With the Architect' in 2014? Receive a fantastic discount and support our operations fund raising campaign at the same time.

Visit 'Keep Architecture Open' and select the number of tickets you want under our $60 REWARD, which entitles you to a double pass for any 'At Home With the Architect' self drive tour in 2014.

This great discount offer ends 12.00pm EST on Tuesday 19 November 2013.



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