Sydney Architecture Festival 2015 wrap
The 2015 Sydney Architecture Festival may be over, but the work of better buildings, spaces and places continues.
The four days of the Festival was about celebrating Sydney's creative capacity - something that continues to grow.
We shared the design secrets behind the building blocks of our communities; our homes.
We heard experts, younger people; locals and national leaders share a call for better design, and better architecture.
We saw, shared, posted, participated, challenged and chose from the options we heard.
Initial estimates suggest around 3,500 people took part in this year's festival, with many more online. In fact, you broke the million mark – with more than 1.5m impressions on Twitter alone.
We want to thank everything who made the effort to be there; like our amazing volunteers; as well as the architects, researchers, home owners and others who shared; and to the sponsors and supporters who helped make it happen.
A new approach for #sydarchfest
The Sydney Architecture Festival began its life in 2007 - in the forecourt of Sydney's Customs House. This year we honour our roots by returning to Customs House for some of those key events, but this is where similarities with past Festivals probably ends.
So what's new?
This year we doubled our ambition, and decided on a curated program which gives us a chance to choreograph events. And we welcomed some new help along the way. #sydarchfest has always been a collaboration. We've worked with more than 120 organizations over the last 9 years; and welcomed more than 30,000 people to our events. But this year we invited Event Directors on board - young architect and award winning public artist and sculptor, Lucy Humphrey; Director of Programs at Object Gallery, Claire McCaughan; and dynamic young planner, John O'Callaghan. Plus, we're working across more than a dozen sites - including some of Sydney's great icons and some of its newest.
Early on, we decided to embrace an idea that Sydney is on the cusp of a ‘creative boom’; growing, evolving, and renewing. We see the Festival opening a channel between our public, our policymakers and our professionals to share expertise and experience; exploring the impact of our architecture on the shape of our city – its people, its culture, its buildings, and all the spaces in-between.
But most importantly, we take the view that - with apologies to Auckland - Sydney is the first truly global city to wake up to each new day. We think Sydney has a role to play in setting the tone for each new day. That's why we chose to move this year's Festival from November to October.
This year, the Festival starts on Friday 2 October - culminating on World Architecture Day, Monday 5 October.
We'll be launching World Architecture Day from Australia's most recognised architectural icon, the Sydney Opera House with an inaugural Festival Oration delivered by a special international guest we've asked to explore a theme of 'Architecture, society and environment'. We think this is the right focus, given the theme for World Architecture Day is: 'Architecture. Building. Climate'.
We're still working through the program - finalising speakers and topics; venue logistics and those fine grain details that make a festival memorable.
2015 Sydney Architecture Festival
Friday 2nd October - Monday 5th October
This year, we’re honouring our roots with a shorter, sharper program that will focus on the city as a global hub; exploring the role that architects, design, research and education play in shaping an environment suited to a thriving global society. In November 2014, the world named Sydney a global infrastructure hub. So what does that mean? And what role does design and architecture play in shaping infrastructure for a better city, better lives and better future? We want to map the global networks that Sydney is a part of, and throw a light on those Sydney architects shaping the future of cities in China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Europe, London and the US. This year, Sydney Architecture Festival will celebrate Sydney as a global hub for design, sustainability, education and attraction.