Tag Archives: Architours

Archi-Tour of Berlin

Well…not really…

But this coming Friday could be close(ish) – An exhibition of Gerrit Engel’s BERLIN PHOTOGRAPHS will be opening at the Academy of Design in Port Melbourne. Courtesy of the Goethe Institute, 42 of a series that numbers more than 200 of his photos will be on display.

The subject matter:
buildings as objects
buildings as objects against a grey sky

INVITATION_Gerrit_Engel (2)

The selected images cross time, geography, history, style and form. Some buildings are iconic, many others are more obscure, but they are all buildings as objects against a grey sky.

1936_trudelwind 1830_pfaueninsel 1959_rotaprint

Gerrit specifically takes the photos with an overcast sky so that all objects are equal, presented objectively. This also gives them a stillness and neutrality that makes them very accessible. You can allow yourself to be absorbed by them like Mike TeeVee in Charlie and Chocolate Factory.

You are (I am) there.

The exhibition is on until September 6 – For more information http://www.goethe.de/ins/au/lp/ver/vme/de11213266v.htm
(please RSVP if you can make it to the opening – I will be delivering the floor talk)

Find information on Gerrit Engel’s Berlin and more  http://www.gerritengel.com/_en/projects/berlin/

And don’t forget the local (Melbourne) tangible version of the Architour can be found right here http://www.architours.com.au/


Heritage, Collaboration and Poo

I am not going to write about collaborating on an architectural project with a built outcome. I think most design professionals understand the benefits of not only working as part of a team but how exciting it is when people from different disciplines get together.

Earlier this month I was one of 3 guides on an Architours ‘architecture and heritage’ tour. We had designed the tour for the current National Trust Heritage Festival which officially runs from 18th April – 19th May.

Architours has always prided itself on having architects, an urban designer and a landscape architect as guides offering opinions and information from different backgrounds. For this tour though we also invited a heritage architect, Janet Beeston, along to join the team.

As luck would have it there was an archaeologist as a guest on the tour. But it got even better as she had excavated the Casselden Place site where the Urban Workshop was built. The Urban Workshop was a joint venture between John Wardle, NH Architecture and Hassel completed in 2006 and the last stop on our tour – couldn’t have planned it better!

Photo 6-04-13 3 55 40 PM (1024x764)

I really like this project. The way the new and old built form, remnants, artifacts and memory layer – from my own many nights in the late 90’s spent waiting in Little Leichhardt Lane to get into Club 44 to fantastical visions of a walled garden at the rear of Madame Brussels brothel housing politicians, prostitutes and peacocks on a warm February evening…

But no amount of research could have unearthed this classic story from Katherine, the archaeologist. A couple of 14-year-old girls were on the dig one day, unenthusiastic about being there and less than interested in the amazing circular pits (some timber barrels and other deeper bluestone circles) that were being revealed. They decided instead to spend the afternoon making face masks from the mud.

Yes, the circular pits were the old cesspits…

Sign up for the architecture + heritage tour on Saturday April 27th here:
Find out more about the National Trust festival here:
An article on the Urban Workshop by Dr Karen Burns can be read here:

(AND if ever you need to top up your wine glass collection it appears the resident pub does not clear its tables at the end of Friday night)

Social media or how twitter helped me start redefining my practice

I met my partner and father of my 3 children in the old-fashioned way – at a nightclub…

So when I sent @social_archi at DM on twitter asking if she wanted to meet for a coffee I was out of my comfort zone.  Up until then all my networks were ones I had met in person – through chance, my own contacts or contacts of contacts.

I was not a doubting gen x,  I just did not see the benefit in tweeting about the mundanities of everyday life… Clearly I did not yet understand how powerful a networking tool the various social medium could be.

I had been following @social_archi and @architours_melb for a while and really loved what they were doing.  Their enthusiasm,  love of our city and desire to share their knowledge about architecture, landscape and urban design with the public really resonated with me at a time I was wanting to do more than just make buildings.

After an awkward ‘first date’, @social_archi and I met again and following that she asked me to join the team.  Melbourne Architours is now one the ways I practice architecture.  I love the research, the conversation / discussion and how being ‘out there’ means I am meeting all kinds of people.

The moral of this story is – you never know where meaningful connections are made.

How has social media worked for you as a professional?


Check out www.architours.com.au  to see what we do – (the upcoming National Trust heritage festival tour should be a beauty).  Or follow @architours_melb on Twitter.

And on social media find me on:

Twitter @shelleymfreeman

instagram @shelleymfreeman

LinkedIn – as myself

but I’m not on Facebook or pinterest…yet