Sandra Kaji-O'Grady



Sandra Kaji-O'Grady
Lecturer in Architecture, History and Theory.
Room 322, G04 'Wilkinson Building', 148 City Road, The University of Sydney, NSW 2006
+61 2 9351 4031

Sandra Kaji-O'Grady

Consultations and Appointments

Consultation Hours:
Consultation Rooms:

to make an appointment outside of these hours.

Research Areas

  • Architectural History and Theory post-WWII
  • Architectural Design

Units and Programs

Academic Qualifications

  • 2001 Doctor of Philosophy (Arts), School of Literary, Visual and Performance Studies, Faculty of Arts, Monash University
    Serialism in Art and Architecture: Context and Theory
    Supervisors: Elizabeth Grosz (1995-1998); Claire Colebrook (1998–1999), Chris Worth (2000)
    Examiners: Andrew Benjamin and Anthony Vidler
  • 1993 Graduate Diploma in Women’s Studies, Murdoch University
  • 1992 Master of Architecture, University of Western Australia.
  • 1990 Bachelor of Architecture (First class Honours), University of Western Australia

Professional Experience

  • July 2005 - Dec 2010 Head of School, Associate Professor, School of Architecture in the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building,The University of Technology, Sydney
  • Feb 1999 - July2005 Lecturer Level C in Architecture (continuing) at the Faculty of Architecture, Building & Planning, University of Melbourne.
  • Jan 1995 - Feb 1999 Lecturer Level B in Architectural Design and Theory, School of Architecture and Building, Deakin University, Victoria, Australia.
  • 1997 - 1998 Architecture and Interior Design Consultant for Esprit.
  • 1992 - 1994 Graduate Architect, Building Management Authority of Western Australia.
  • 1988 -1989 Student architect with the Building Management Authority of Western Australia

Memberships and Associations

  • Jan 2011–2014 Member, College of Experts, Australian Research Council. Humanities and Creative Arts Discipline Group
  • 2006 - ARC International Reader
  • 2006 - 2011 Member, AASA Heads of Architecture committee
  • 1998 - Member, Editorial Board, Architectural Theory Review, ISSN 1326-4826.
  • 1995 - Member, Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand


Architecture is a cultural practice, a site of technological application and a profession. The tensions between service to clients, technique of production and fabrication, and making sense of the world through representation, form and spatial organization, fascinates Professor Kaji-O’Grady. Her abiding motivation is to understand how these larger tensions in the discipline are played out in specific circumstances.

Professor Kaji-O’Grady’s research interests are in the cross-fertilization between architecture, science and art in the 1960s and 1970s. She draws out the relationships between emerging sciences such as computerisation and robotics, the development of performance art and installation, and the architecture of the 1970s. She situates these exchanges in their historical and cultural contexts and alongside theoretical debates in and out of architecture. As a critic, she is concerned to assess the consequences of individual buildings for the discipline. Additionally, she researches notation and colour through her own art practice and is interested in supervising higher degree research by project.

Kaji-O'Grady's research has been published in leading international journals including The Journal of Architectural Education and the Journal of Architecture, and as chapters in books with international audiences and publishers including The SAGE Handbook of Architectural Theory, Sage, (forthcoming 2010) and Architecture, Disciplinarity and the Arts, A&S Books, Ghent, (2009). She has presented regularly at international conferences including in the UK, USA, Finland, France, Germany and Belgium. She delivered the first plenary lecture at the conference ‘Universal versus Individual: The Architecture of the 1960s' in Finland, organised by the Alvar Aalto Academy in 2002. In the same year, at the invitation of the architect, Hiromi Fujii, she delivered a lecture on his work at Shibaura Institute of Technology in Tokyo, Japan.

The innovative nature of Kaji-O'Grady's research lies in the connections made between architecture and art in the 1960s and 1970s, and between architectural design and the socio-political contexts of contemporary practice. Her research on the 1970s is pioneering scholarship on a period that has only just come into view as a historical subject. Her work on the transfer of ideas and techniques between art, architecture and emerging information technologies in the 1970s has been published internationally in The Journal of Architectural Education (61/4, 2008) and presented at national and international conferences. It builds on her doctoral thesis and previous research on cross-disciplinary techniques in art, music and architecture. Completed in 2001 through the School of Literary, Visual and Performance Studies at Monash University, her doctoral work developed skills in interdisciplinary research and knowledge of the broader themes of aesthetic, media and visual theory, as evident in her recent contribution on ‘Formalism and Forms of Practice', for The SAGE Handbook of Architectural Theory (2009).

In addition to refereed works, Kaji-O'Grady has regularly contributed research ideas to the wider profession and community through publication and broadcasting. A prolific critic of art, design and architecture, she has over forty building, exhibition and book reviews in the professional press including Monument, Object, Architecture Australia, Architecture Review and Artichoke. Kaji-O'Grady has written essays for exhibition catalogues and made public presentations for the 2006 and 2008 Sydney Biennale, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, the Victorian and NSW chapters of the AIA, the Museum of Modern Art at Heide, the Victorian College of the Arts Gallery, the Geelong Art Gallery and the Melbourne Fringe Festival. A practicing artist, she has exhibited her work that explores notation and colour using pianola rolls and Dulux paint samples in Sydney and Singapore.

She has supervised three doctoral students to completion, and has served as external examiner for masters and doctoral theses from several Australian & NZ universities.

Publications and outputs

Books | Book Chapters | Journal Articles | Conference Presentations and Publications | Architectural and Design | Public Lectures and Presentations

Book Chapters

2012 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., & Smitheram, J, 'Critical Utopia: Site of Reversible Destiny, Yoro', in Critical Tools: International Colloquium on Architecture and Cities #3, Hilde Heynen and Jean-Louis Genard (eds.), La Lettre, Volée, Bruxelles, 2011.

2012 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Formalism and Forms of Practice', in The Safe Handbook of Architectural Theory, Greig Chrysler, Stephen Cairns, Hilde Heynen (eds.), Sage, 2011.

2011 | Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Seriature’, Architecture & Series, ed. Dorian Wiszniewksi, Ampersand Publishing, 2011, pp. 6-9.

2009 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Serial Techniques in the Arts: General Ambitions and Particular Manifestations', in Architecture, Disciplinarity and the Arts John Macarthur and Andrew Leach, A&S Books, Ghent,

2009 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Designing a practice: the emergence of a multi-office global practice', Cox Architects and Planners 1960-2010, Images Publishing, Melbourne, 2008.

2009 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Public Art and Audience Reception: Theatricality and Fiction', in Back to the City. Collaboration between Artists and Architects: Strategies for Informal Urban Design', Steffen Lehman (ed.), Hatje Cantz, 2009.

2006 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Architectural Models: Literally and Metaphorically', Public, Vol. 1, Spatial Tactics: Woods Bagot Research Press, Melbourne, Sydney.

2005 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Public Art and Crime', in Steffen Lehman, e, Absolutely Public: Crossover - Art and Architecture, The Images Publishing Group, Melbourne.

2002 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Op Art in the Abyss of Design', Good Vibrations: The Legacy of Op Art, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne.

2000 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The serial underside of structuralism: Boulez, Lévi-Strauss, Eco, Eisenman and Fujii', in Re-Framing Architecture: Theory, Science and Myth, Michael J. Oswald and John Moore, (eds.), Archadia Press, Sydney.

Journal Articles

2010 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Architectural Aphorisms', Architectural Theory Review, Vol. 15, No. 3, November.

2008 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The London Conceptualists: Architecture and Performance in the 1970s', The Journal of Architectural Education, Vol. 61, No. 4, 2008.

2007 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Book review: PAtricia an Ulzen Imagine a Metropolis: Rotterdam's Creative Class 1970-2000', Visual Communications, Vol. 6, No. 3, October.

2006 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Melbourne versus Sydney', [[i||Architectural Theory Review', Vol. 11, No. 2.

2005 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., and Raisbeck, P., 'Prototype cities in the sea', Journal of Architecture, Vol. 10, No. 4.

2005 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The London Conceptualists: architecture and conceptual art in the 1970s', in respenser les limites: l'architecture á travers l'espace, le tempts et le disciplines, Paris, INHA, (Actes de colloques), 2005.

2003 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., and Willis, J., 'Conditions, Connections and Change: Reviewing Australian Architectural Theory 1880-2000', Architectural Theory Review, Vol. 8, No. 2.

2002 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'National identity at Arakawa and Gins' site of reversible destiny - Yoro, Japan', Fabrications, Vol. 12, No. 2.

2001 | Kaji-O'Grady, S. 'Authentic Japanese Architecture After Bruno Taut: The Problem of Eclecticism', Fabrications, Vol. 11, No. 2.

1998 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Architectural Serialism', Architectural Theory Review, Vol. 3, No. 2.

Conference presentations and publications

2012 | Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Laboratory Myths’, Proceedings of Fabulation: 29th SAHANZ International Conference 2012, Launceston, 5-8 July, 2012, eds. Stuart King and Stephen Loo.

2011 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Environment Bubbles: Architecture, Medicine and Media', Proceedings of Audience: SAHANZ International Conference, Brisbane, 7-10 July. Antony Moulis and Deborah van der Plaat, (eds.).

2009 | Russel, A., King, S., Kaji-O'Grady, S. and Edwards, D., 'Mapping Ultimo, Sydney for Sustainable Tourism', in Urban Design Research: Method and Applications. Proceedings of the International Conference held at Birmingham City University, 3-4 December. Mohsen Aboutorabi and Andreas Wesener, (eds.) Birmingham City University.

2008 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Challenges for Architectural History and Criticism: The Super-sized Office and the Transdisciplinary Studio', Proceedings of History in Practice: SAHANZ 25th International Conference, 3-6 July, David Beynon and Ursula de Jong (eds.). Deakin University, Geelong.

2007 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The dramatisation of 'eco-technologies' in recent high rise towers', in Kristen Orr and Sandra Kaji-O'Grady, (eds), Proceedings of the fourth international conference of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia, "Techniques and Technologies: Transfer and Transformation", - University of Technology, Sydney, Sept. 27-29, 2007.

2007 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The solipsism of serial arts', in George E. Lasker and Ana Luz, (eds.), On choreographies in music, visual and performing arts and Environmental Design', Vol. 1, Baden-Baden, July 31-August 1, 2007. Tecumseh, Canada: The International Institute for Advanced Studies in Systems Research and Cybernetics, pp. 1-5.

2006 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Larrikins and Landscape: The Quest to be the most Australian City', unAustralia: Cultural Studies Association of Australasia Annual Conference, Canberra 6-8 December 2006, electronic proceedings.

2005 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., ''Architecture as Performance Art: The collaboration between Rosalie Goldberg and Bernard Tschumi', Refereed Proceedings: Third International Conference of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia (AASA), Kathi Holt-Damant and Paul Sanders, Brisbane (28-30 Sept).

2004 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The look of information: conceptual art, computers and architecture in the 1970s', Limits: Proceedings of the 21st Annual conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand, Harriet Edquist and Helene Frichot, (eds.), Melbourne, Vol. 1.

2003 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Hiromi Fujii and Serialism', Contribution and Confusion: Architecture and the Influence of Other Fields of Inquiry. Proceedings of the 91st ACSA International Conference, Helsinki, Finland, July 27-30, 2003. Scott Poole and Pia Sarpaneva, (eds.). ACSA Press, Washington DC.

2004 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Architecture and te Future in the Philosophical Writings of Virilio and Flusser', CongressCATH 2004: The Architecture of Philosophy/The Philosophy of Architecture, 9-11 July, Bradford.

2003 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Divergent accounts of architectural progress: Virilio and War, Fluster and the Factory', Progress: Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians, Australia and New Zealand, Sydney.

2003 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Constrictive Procedures in Architectural Design: The Oulipian Example' Design + Research: Project Based Research in Architecture, Clare Newton, Sandra Kaji-O'Grady and Simon Wollan (eds.), Melbourne, Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia

2002 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Serialism in the Architectural Experiments of the 1960s', Universal vs. Individual: The Architecture of the 1960s, Proceedings of the International Conference on the Research of Modern Architecture, Jyväskylä, Finland, Alvar Aalto Academy, 2002.

2002 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'From Stroll Garden to Stumble Park: Mapping Japan at Site of Reversible Destiny', De-Placing Difference: Architecture, Culture and Imaginative Geography, Samer Akkach, ed., Centre for Asian and Middle Eastern Architecture, The University of Adelaide.

2000 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Derrida's "Countersignature": Levinas, Titus-Carmel and Tschumi'., Proceedings of the 17th Annual Conference of the Society of Architectural Historians of Australia and New Zealand, SAHANZ, Wellington, New Zealand, November.

2000 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Speculating on Architectural Models: in 'Architecture and Education', proceedings of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australasia International Conference. Gary T. Moore and Louise Trevillion, (eds.) University of Sydney.

1999 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Temporality in Soler's Suite Sans Fins', Papers from teh 16th Annual Conference of SAHANZ, Richard Blythe and Rory Spence (eds.), SAHANZ, Launceston and Hobart.

1998 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'The Children's Museum', Proceedings of the 3rd International Seminar Forum UNESCO: University and Heritage, W.S. Logan, C. Long and J. Martin (eds.), Melbourne and Geelong.

1998 | Kaji-O'Grady, S., 'Architectural serialism', Papers from the 15th annual conference of SAHANZ, Julie Willis, Philip Goad and Andrew Hutson (eds.), Melbourne.

Criticism and editorial in professional journals

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Colour Block: Searching for Meaning in Monochromatic Architecture’, (cover feature article) Monument, 106, December 2011/January 2012, pp. 34-41.

Kaji-O’Grady, S, ‘Gehry comes to Sydney’, vol. 100, no. 2, March/April 2011, Architecture Australia, pp. 16-18.

Kaji-O’Grady, S, ‘Lowy Cancer Research Centre’, vol. 99, no 3, May/June 2010, Architecture Australia, pp. 64-71.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Victor Churchill’, Artichoke, no. 30, March-May 2010, pp. 48–52.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘'A wound to the head for undead Modernism', Monument, no. 95, February-March 2010, pp. 33–36.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘SANAA: An installation by Ryue Nisizawa and Kazuyo Sejima of SANAA, discussed by Sandra Kaji-O’Grady’, Architecture Australia, September/October 2009, pp. 27-28

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Singularly Pluralist: Jane Foss Russell Building, University of Sydney’, Architecture Review Australia no. 109, April/May 2009, pp. 104–111.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Artificial Light’, Monument, issue 88, Dec 08/Jan 09, pp. 45-46.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘A New Australian Pavilion’, Architecture Australia, Vol. 97, no.5, Sept/Oct 08, pp. 45­–47.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Review of Fiona Hall: Force Field’, Artichoke, 23, 2008, p. 70–73.

Kaji-O’Grady, ‘The Studio in the City’, Object Magazine, issue 55, April 2008, pp. 20-23. 2000 word commissioned article on the history and significance of the design studio in the city. ISSN 1038-1856

Kaji-O’Grady, S, ‘The Field: National Awards Review’, Architecture Australia 96/6 November/December 2007

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Book Review: Patricia van Ulzen, Imagine a Metropolis (2007)’, Visual Communication, vol. 6, no. 3, 2007, pp. 363–366

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Lyons Law building’, Architecture Australia 96/4, July/August 2007

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Brisbane Girls Grammar’, Architecture Australia, 96/5, September/October 2007, p. 85–93

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Lamington Warehouse’, Architecture Review Australia, 2007

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Why Architecture Matters’, Architecture Australia, 95/5, September/October, 2006, p.18

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Burst 003’, Architecture Australia, 95/5, September/October, 2006, pp.80–87

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘The writing’s on the wall’, U: The Magazine of the University of Technology, Sydney, Issue 6, September 2006, pp. 6–7.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Architectural Models, Literally and Metaphorically’, Public, special issue ‘Spatial Tactics’, no. 1, 2006.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Adding to the Opera House’, Architecture Australia, 95/3, May/June 2006, pp. 53–57.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Future Fast’, U: The Magazine of the University of Technology, Sydney, Issue 2, March 2006, p. 11.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘ L5’, Architecture Australia, 95/2, March/April 2006, pp. 88–95.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Architectural Academia’, Architecture Bulletin, January/February 2006, p. 4-5.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., Catalogue essay, Alex Selenitsch: Open and Closed, Icon Museum of Art, Deakin University Press, 1 March–13 April 2006, unpaginated.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘The Helen Lempriere National Sculpture Award’, Artichoke, 11, 2005, pp. 118–121.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Mastering Architecture’, Architecture Australia, 94/2, March/April 2005, pp. 31–32.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Spolia: Found Objects in Contemporary Architecture’, Architectural Review Australia, 91, 2004, pp. 110–115.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘National Emergency Services Memorial’, Architecture Australia, 93/5, Sept/Oct 2004, pp. 58–59.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Untitled: Genius’, Subaud 5, 2004, unpaginated.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., C. Newton and S. Wollan, eds., Design and Research: Conference of the Association of Architecture Schools of Australia, Melbourne, September 2003.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Review: Surface Consciousness’, Architecture Australia, 92/6, Nov/Dec 2003. pp. 46–48.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Westgate Bridge Memorial Park’, Architecture Australia, 92/5, Sept/Oct 2003, pp. 44–47.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Surfaces of Painting and Architecture’, Projects One: VCA Gallery, Victorian College of the Arts, Melbourne, 2003, catalogue essay, unpaginated.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Arts and the Iconic’, Architecture Australia, 92/1, Jan/Feb 2003, pp. 37–43.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Questioning Image’, Artichoke, 2/2 2002, pp. 28–37.

Kaji-O’Grady, S. and Wollan, S., eds, -ise: Essays on Architecture and Urbanism, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, 2002.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘University Square and the Sidney Myer Asia Centre: A Critical Review of New Campus Architecture in Parkville’, Melbourne University Magazine, 2002, pp. 7–9.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Doctors’ Orders’, Architectural Review Australia, 77, Spring, 2001, pp. 80–83.

Kaji-O’Grady, S. and Rawlins, M., eds, -ise: Essays on Architecture and Urbanism, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, 2001.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Decoration and Artifice’, Architecture Australia, 90/4, July/Aug, 2001, pp. 72–75.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Plastic Extrusions’, Architecture Australia, 90/4, July/Aug, 2001, pp. 62–64.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Art & Life’, Architecture Australia, 89/5, Sept/Oct 2000, pp. 98-101.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Scanning the cosmos,’ Architecture Australia, 89/2, Mar/Apr 2000, pp. 46–49.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., Critical Studies in Contemporary Architecture, Deakin University, 1998, Geelong.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Postmodern Architectures’, Postmodernism, ed. Scott McQuire, Deakin University, Geelong, 1997.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘The Task of Architectural Thinking’, Architectural Theory Review, Vol. 1, no. 2., 1996, pp. 3–5.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Thinking Architecture: Theory in the Work of Australian Architects’, Exedra, Vol. 6, no. 2, 1996, pp. 58–59.

Kaji-O’Grady, S., ‘Primitive Borrowing: The Work of Simon Thornton’, Exedra, Vol. 6, No. 2, 1996, pp. 32–37.

Research Grants and Awards

2010 | ARC Linkage Grant ‘Equity and Diversity in the Australian Architecture Profession: Women, Work, and Leadership’, Chief Investigator with Naomi Stead $192 500 AR

2008 | UTS Challenge Grant Blueprint for Sydney ‘Design Strategies and Tactics Towards Sustainable Urban Tourism in Sydney using the Ultimo Creative Precinct as a Case Study’, Chief Investigator, $74,000

2007-9 |ARC Linkage Grant ‘The Architecture of Academic Research’ with Martin Kornberger and Industry Partner, Woods Bagot $150,000

2007 | UTS Learning and Teaching Performance Fund Initiative 2007, Faculty Curriculum Renewal Grants, ‘Interactive and On-Line Case Studies for Architectural Practice Learning in the new Master of Architecture, $48,000

2003 | University of Melbourne Early Career Researcher Grant of $14,500 Serialism in Europe: Support-Surface

2003 | Faculty Strategic Grant of $15,000 shared with Paul Walker The 1970s