THONET

FRIDAY 24 OCTOBER 2014

SEARCH   
 
 
WAN Mobile
 
WAN Mobile
Previous Next
 
A'Beckett Tower, Melbourne, Australia 
Friday 28 Oct 2011
 
Testing Goethe's theory of colours 
 
Photography: Peter Clarke 
 
Your comments on this project

No. of Comments: 0

Add comments | More comments

Be the first to comment
 

Award Entry

Elenberg Fraser explore the sensory effects of colour rather than symbolic representation 

Elenberg Fraser were approached in early 2007 by an existing client and given the brief to develop a residential tower in the academic precinct in Melbourne with compact apartments to cater for the urban young professional market.

Sitting on a 900 sq m block, A'Beckett Tower is a prototype for high-density residual infill. The building form follows the podium and tower model with a non-traditionally treated podium. A thin veneer of apartments lines the carpark, which is accessed via elevators for cars, liberating the podium facade from cars and ramps and presenting an active residential layer to the city.

With 347 north facing sunshade louvres in 16 different colours, you could be forgiven for thinking the architects were engaging with the rich local architectural context. Au contraire, they are actually exploring the sensory effects of colour, rather than symbolic representation, by testing Goethe's Theory of Colours.

The architects are interested in how the body reacts and processes the blended and indistinct colour field, rather than what meaning the mind attaches to discrete coloured elements. Ironically, given the sunshades function to block heat from the building, the palette for the louvres was inspired by Australia's - up until recently drought-stricken - landscape.

Even while La Niña (over) nourishes the parched soil, the building is a reminder of the area's environmental history, and potentially its future. Goethe's theory asserts that colour is a phenomenon that exists at the edge of light and dark - as you walk around A'Beckett, the black map of the sunshades opens up to the colour field, fading into light.

This is architecture in the round, experienced cinematically as you view it from different angles. At the same time the building can be read as a whole, the detailing of the sunshades re-scaling it down to industrial design; the city is about what things are and how they're made. At times the sunshades appear to be falling off the building, forming a nap and grain from both the interior and exterior.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Add your name to this project
Elenberg Fraser
www.elenbergfraser.com

More projects by this architect

Avenue

Abode318

Clara Apartments

lilli Apartments

Elenberg Fraser

More Projects

Latest Jobs in Melbourne

Architects / Designers

 
Vola
ECOWAN
 

Click here to view the NEWS IN PICTURES tablet site