Exhibition Space for Architecture (Surry Hills)

When I was in Sydney last, I had lunch with my friend and fellow Churchill Fellow Adam Haddow. I think everyone knows Adam, but just in case you don’t, he’s a principal director at SJB and founder of The Architects Bookshop in Crown Street.

He told me about his plan for a dedicated architecture exhibition space, and asked if I’d help. Definitely! I said.

Adam Haddow.jpg

Adam wants the profession to fund this great initiative, and he put out this request for support a few weeks ago. He asked recipients to spread the word, so here goes:

Dear Friends

Since opening The Architect's Bookshop we have been hankering to do something more to raise the profile of the built environment in our city. The bookshop has been a good first step - we've been able to host events and have created a space to get everyone together. At the same time the shop has provided an opportunity for the general public to engage in all things built environment - but we'd love to do be doing more! We would love for design and architecture to become more essential in the discussions about our city.

To this end we believe it is critical that a space exists to discuss the role architecture plays in creating a fair, dynamic and intriguing city. Too often the intellectual and financial effort architects invest in competitions, research, proposition and built outcomes remain unseen. So, we have decided to do something about it!

We are creating a dedicated space to exhibit architecture in Sydney. We want to unite practice and academia for the benefit of the profession and community. We want this exhibition space to be a place where ideas about our city are communicated and are accessible to the public. Our principle objective is to make exhibitions available that will engage and expose the public to a broader understanding of architecture

It is our ambition to open a permanent exhibition space above the Architect’s Bookshop, at 499 Crown Street Surry Hills. It will bededicated to exhibiting architecture and will open late in 2019.

The Exhibition Space for Architecture (E.S.A.) will host up to twelve month-long exhibitions yearly with each exhibition uniquely curated. Curators will be from the profession and will be appointed by the E.S.A. advisory panel. Exhibitions will be free and open to the public 7 days a week. Exhibitions will cover topics such as:

· Competition entries

· Retrospectives

· Propositions

· Research

It is our intent that E.S.A. will be set up as a not-for-profit organisation and for this structure to direct the day to day activities. It should be noted that we will not have the status of a Deductible Gift Recipient as defined by the ATO.

We believe that the funding of the E.S.A. should come from the profession – not from Suppliers or Developers. It is important that as a profession we fund the exhibition space and control the narrative. To this end we are asking for foundation donations. As a guide we are hoping for the following:

$ 2,500 Small Practice

$ 5,000 Medium Practice

$10,000 Large Practice

$ any amount Individual contribution

We are aiming to source funding to facilitate a small fit out & provide operational costs for 2 years. It is our aim is to run E.S.A. for a minimum of 2 years, to show the energy from the profession in pursing such an initiative and the interest from the public to visit and engage. This will enable us to build a business case for a permanent public institution after the 2 year trial.

To register your support and/or financial contribution to E.S.A. please email me at adam@thearchitectsbookshop.com.au Excitedly, Hannah Tribe, of Tribe Studio has pledged the first donation - $2500! Thanks Hannah.

We would ask that you pass this email and the attachment onto every architect you know! We need all the help we can get. I hope you will help us make this happen

With Thanks,


Sounds Like Design is all about making architecture more accessible to the public, so we’ll be dipping into the coffers to donate to this worthy cause (as we did when the AAA was established - RB was a Founding Partner and chaired the voluntary tour guide group)

Hopefully you can get behind it as well? Email Adam to pledge your support!