Student work 'youtopia' designs performance space for Sydney Festival

1 September 2011

Youtopia pursues the dream of other spaces and times, of outrageous and fascinating experiences, of the glamour and lights of Sydney Festival through a series of design explorations. The exhibition at the University of Sydney's Tin Sheds Gallery showcases the 2011 design conversation between Sydney Festival and University of Sydney's Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning. The resulting design projects animate qualities shared by Sydney Festival and the University of Sydney: bold, progressive, adventurous, intelligent and excellent.

Dagmar Reinhardt, Lecturer of Digital Architecture Research, developed the project with a team of researchers from digital design, architectural practice, structural engineering and digital fabrication: together with Dirk Anderson and Eduardo de Oliveira Barata of UFO Sydney, Marjo Niemela of the Faculty's Digital Fabrication Lab, Alexander Jung of reinhardtjung, Harry Partridge of Partridge Partners, Robert Beson of AR-MA.

Postgraduate students of the Master of Digital Architecture worked closely with Lindy Hume and Bill Harris of Sydney Festival on concept developments for three boldly contemporary performance spaces for potential theatre locations: Turbine Hall on Cockatoo Island, Festival Garden in Hyde Park opposite the Famous Spiegeltent and The Quadrangle at The University of Sydney. Conversations with leading professionals encouraged transfers into and out of architectural practice, architectural theory, audio and acoustics, digital fabrication, interaction and mediation, structural engineering, theatre and performance studies, and cultural research. Participants to this dialogue were amongst others Bill Martens, Densil Cabrera, Luis Miranda, Joseph Buch, Chris L Smith, Patrick Nolan (legsonthewall) and Michael Scott/Mitchell (NIDA).

The exhibition features works that represent Australia's most promising young architectural minds, envisioning the ephemeral and captivating synchrony of an interactive landscapes, invoking the sublime, tracing transitions and spatial flows; offering a quilted lounge and other performance concepts exploring prosthetic folds, swarm intelligence, tetrahedal autopoetics, structural trees, Catenary networks, 'Mise en Abyme', phenomenal experiences, and multiple angles of vision. The exhibiton also showcases the application of digital technology by advanced design processes in 3D modelling and scripting environments, and the production of prototypes and models through the Architecture Faculty's Digital Fabrication Lab.

Amongst these, Youtopia exclusively presents four key approaches towards performative spaces: ‚Phosphorescence of the Sea' by Sean Bryen, ‚Eroded' by Oliver Hessian and Iain Blampied, 'Musical Chairs' by Ellen Rosengren-Fowler and Renee Blyth, and 'The Spritz' by Rachel Couper and Ivana Kuzmanovska. These architectural visions generate captivating performance spaces, mechanism for immersing an audience into a Heterotopian environment, especially produced for You. Kaleidoscopic reflections of reality, unreality, performance, self and the immediate create an other-space where anything is possible. Perceptions are challenged, expectations elevated and audience and performers primed to be transported, to be consumed by the moment - a dome, a theatre, a bar, a spectacle.

The exhibition at the Tin Sheds, within the Wilkinson Building and the home of Architecture at Sydney, runs from January 12 to January 26, 2012.

Tin Sheds Gallery,
Faculty of Architecture, Design and Planning
Wilkinson Building
148 City Road,
The University of Sydney, NSW 2006

January 12 - Jan 26 .
2012, 10am-5pm, Tuesd-Sat

Contact: John Elliott

Phone: 02 9351 7591

Email: 1f173a384309581f02211b0707062c1725300e565437257c0e47