Monthly Archives: April 2012

In the foyer of Torbreck, my apartment building, there is a table. This is where you can pick up a newspaper or The Brisbane News as you arrive home.

Over the last few months something special has happened to the table. It has become the Residents’ Swap Table.

Books, magazines, outgrown children’s clothes, interesting utensils, dressmaker’s patterns, shoes, toys all sorts of things have stated arriving on the table.

The best thing is that you can pick up a book for the afternoon, have a little read, and if it’s not your thing you simply put it back on the table for someone else.

There is one rule I do keep. You must put something on the table to be able to pick an item up. I have placed Architecture Magazines, books and dress up clothes on the table, so I feel A-Ok about the odds and ends I have picked up.

Such a joy each morning to walk through the foyer and see what has arrived on the table overnight.

I do love the community at Torbreck! Thank you!

I know I have been very quiet lately.

It’s not that I haven’t had anything to say. On the contrary there have been major breakthroughs, many meetings, presentations, travel interstate, planning, countless applications, interviews and writing.

There has been a wall of work like the thick mist I woke up to the other morning over Brisbane. It was in all directions. Incomprehensibly deep. It completely concealed any view out or clear way through.

Project by Project…

…interview by interview…

…etc by etc…

I have found my way clear and back to tracepattern.

Can you describe a person’s contribution throughout their life in twenty or so words?

If you have never met a person can you (sift through pages on the internet, perhaps interview a few people, maybe talk with a couple of them on the phone about the subject’s life and then) write about them? We can try, but then you are bound to always fall short. The power and the problem of words is that to the unfamiliar such a description may appear complete and factual.

So let me write simply about my experience of Max Horner.

Max influenced the way I think and make. As my first Year Lecturer of Design in Architecture at the University of Queensland in 1993, he demanded that we (as students) work hard to truly understand the implications of our ideas as architects. He asked more questions than gave answers; he challenged everything including the way we thought, the way we drew, the tools that we selected to make a mark on a page and the way we spoke about our projects… And for that I will be forever truly grateful.

If you call out a persons name I believe you bring the memories of that person back to you. You can almost hear their voice, recall their mannerisms and the funny moments you shared.

And so I call his name now.

Can you describe a person’s contribution throughout their life in twenty or so words?

Yes you can reduce it down to just one.


Thread Screen 2009. Photography by Tobias Titz. This screen was inspired by the pattern of western light passing through foliage, lattice, across a verandah finally resting on a speckled glass window pane.

Mapping Occupation 2009. Photography by Jon Linkins. It is a record of the occupation of a verandah over the course of a day.

These two works included in Trace at Pin-Up Project Space were selected from the Where We Live Collection, made with the assistance of a 2008/2009 Creative Sparks Grant. These studies aimed to capture the qualities that enrich our lives in Brisbane and define the special places where we live. Many were informed by our unique light and use of space specific to our climate, views and places within the city.


A large part of the initial research for the  Where We Live project was photographic. In all, seven different places or ‘typologies’ were selected and researched for the project including ‘Up High’, ‘By the River,  ‘In the Centre’ and ‘Living Rough’. Only one of these ‘Living at the Edge’ was selected for final exhibition at Raw Space Gallery.

A Sister Work to Thread Screen is Light Study 2009. Photography by Christina Waterson.

Where We Live Installation at Raw Space Gallery 2010. Photography by Jon Linkins.

Raw Space Gallery located on Melbourne Street (South Brisbane) allowed 24 hour viewing of the works. This meant they were readily accessible to a wide diversity of people who both worked and passed through the area on a daily basis.

Both Thread Screen and Mapping Occupation 2009 were selected for TRACE because they are yet to be realised to their true potential. They are in waiting to still evolve and become fully.

Where We Live was a Creative Sparks Grant Project. Creative Sparks is a joint initiative of Brisbane City Council and the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland. Where We Live at Raw Space Gallery was an Official Associated Event of 2010 Unlimited: Designing for the Asia Pacific.

By the time Easter arrives the nights are cooler and so, in the mornings

Dew rests thickly on the ground tracing the spider webs through the grass and onto the fence line,

Upstairs Dad is making another cup of tea and listening to the radio,

The parrots arrive at the kitchen window… tap tap tap.

Dad rests a spoonful of honey on the verandah railing and leaves them to enjoy it,

Mum is out in the garden picking Rocket, Cilantro and Lettuce for lunch,

Butcher Birds and Kookaburras keep an eager eye on her action that may flush out a juicy insect,

The Hares have been munching on the garden greens poking through the mesh,

As I come down the stairs from the house I see them skipping off across the paddock

Every so often they pause before bounding away again.

Soon it will be time for a walk through the bush past the wild lemon tree and

Bush orchids nestled in the widowers where the eagles dry their wings,

Past the undergrowth where the Willy Wagtails dance and vines grow across the gullies

down to the edge of the river.

My thoughts are with my family and my home because I didn’t make it there for Easter…

Brisbane Insider

With Brisbane Indesign (BID) only 53 Days away, creatives all ’round town are abuzz with planning, making, and collaborating to ensure it is an event to remember!

I was invited by Indesign to be a Brisbane Insider, that is, share my personal experience of Brisbane including places I like to snack, hangout etc. in a cool one page format.

I especially liked Designer Surya Graf's Insider Substation love...I often run into him at Cup...

... I enjoyed the perspective of Interior Designer Erin Dore (I would like to meet Erin...Maybe at BID!)...

...and always Architect Robert Riddel's eloquence and beautiful handwriting.


Check out all of the Brisbane Insiders and their unique insights at Brisbane Indesign!

1 Scott Street, Kangaroo Point, Brisbane, Queensland.

Scott Street Apartments (designed by Jackson Teece Architects) is located at the junction of Kangaroo Point and The Story Bridge, Brisbane. It is an intriguing building from the outside with sculptural facade, and shimmering tiles that reflect the changing mood of the sky. Exquisitely detailed both inside and out, Scott Street is testimony to the importance of understanding context, siting, program and the experience of joyful living. Its considered relationship with a wider context means that the joy is experienced by not only the residents of the apartments but also the residents of the wider city.

Sculptural Relief: Precast concrete facade inspired by native mangrove and melaleuca forests found along the Brisbane River.

View to Brisbane’s CBD (including Riparian Plaza by the late Harry Seidler) between Scott Street apartments and adjacent Heritage Listed Silverwells Residence.

Scott Street Apartment Entry on Main Street.

Recently I had the chance to visit Scott Street Apartments. This opportunity came about through an artwork request by artisan: idea skill product. artisan were asked by Lindsay Bennett Marketing to fit out one of the amazing full floor apartments. artisan is an active body in Queensland ‘presenting and promoting unique and individual quality crafted design to an Australian and international audience’.

They selected works from more than 20 Queensland Creatives for one full floor apartment at Scott Street. Works included those by artists Lincoln Austin, Ian Friend and Leonard Brown; makers Kenji Uranishi, Will Marx and Joanna Bone; and designers Fukutoshi Ueno, Alexander Lotersztain, Brian Steendyk, David Shaw, Kent Gration, Surya Graf, Jason Bird and Easton Pearson. Please view the photos of these talented creatives’ work at Scott Street featured on artisan’s blog spot.

It was very refreshing to see this diverse selection within the one environment. Usually you witness works by specific artists or designers in a solo or group exhibition in a gallery environment. I have never experienced these kind of juxtapositions before in someone’s (potential) home. There was a comfortable nesting of materials, mediums and concepts and of course I was very excited to experience my work in this mix.

Me with X-Screen 2008: This particular format of X-Screen was made especially for the Gallery Corridor at Scott Street. You can see Alexander Lotersztain’s Crusoe Sofa with Scott Street’s Sculptural Facade behind. Photography by Andrea Higgins for artisan.

Looking through Scale Screen 2012 to Intra Screen 2008. Photography by Tobias Titz.

From afar: Intra Screen in a 6 x 3 Configuration. Photography by Tobias Titz.

Intra Screen (2008) was included in TRACE at Pin-Up Project Space because it is an essential key to understanding the way I think and make. Intra refers to the weave or module type. It is one of five weaving types within The Komodo Series. This series continues to inform my practice and reminds me about important relationships; scale and material; material and light; complex whole and simple parts; and ideas and their potential to inspire others.


The Komodo Series was launched in September 2008 at Living Edge’s Brisbane Show Room. The event was part of the 2008 Brisbane Indesign celebrations.

Living Edge's Brisbane Show Room in Fortitude Valley. Photography by Aidan Murphy.

The Komodo Series Launch 2008. Photography by Aidan Murphy.

Natural forms, structures and geometries that stem from the beautiful qualities and simple properties of materials inspired me to make The Komodo Series. Through an experimental handmade process initial 3-D studies in cardboard were transformed into larger objects and surfaces in a range of materials including plywood, polypropylene and stainless steel. The Komodo Series makes visible my playful testing process.

A family of beautiful objects; my tests in cardboard, corflute and polypropylene. Photography by David Sandison.

Plexa#1 Screen Study made in reclaimed cardboard. Installation at artisan; idea skill product, Ivory Street Window 2008. Photography by Andrea Higgins for artisan.

The actual modules (such as Intra and Plexa) allow the individual to experiment, reinvent and personalize their surroundings. The parts can be assembled into multiple configurations  and objects including screens, lights and sculptural forms.  Each change in combination, size and material creates subtle variations to light, shadow, density and use.

Plexa Screen at Living Edge 2008. Photography by Aidan Murphy.

Launch Night: I am sitting (exhausted and speechless for once) in front of Plexa Screen, listening to Cameron's opening speech. Photography by Aidan Murphy.

Cameron Bruhn opens the event. He is pictured with Komodo Series Forms. Photography by Aidan Murphy.

It was great to see Intra Screen within the environment of Pin-Up Project Space for TRACE.

‘From little things big things grow’ (thank you Paul Kelly and Kev Carmody) and will continue to grow and change and reveal their true potential over time. This rings true for me every time I make, install and witness any part of the The Komodo Series.

The Komodo Series: Small things have a big Impact. Hand-Self Portrait.

The Komodo Series was assisted by an Arts Queensland Sector Project Grant in 2008. The launch was also made possible through the kind support of artisan: idea skill product and Living Edge.