The tectonic, levels of abstraction and the figurative were described as the three traditions that distinguished Australian architecture by Phillip Goad in New Directions. These design traditions are widely utilised and persistent in Australian architecture. Ever since the German Enlightenment, the tectonic has been extensively explored and studied, it impacted many post-industrial countries including Australia. This essay will elaborate the theoretical dimensions of the tectonic tradition, discuss and examine the discourse relating this tradition via selected works of Melbourne-based architect Sean Godsell and Sydney-based architect Peter Stuchbury.
The term “tectonic” came from the Greek word “tekton” which stands for carpenter or builder.…show more content… He emphasised the attention Stutchbury put into the detail of construction joint, exquisite framing and thoughtful placement on site, are the poetic tectonic expression in their projects. Many of Stutchbury’s project demonstrated meticulous craftsmanship through exposed light timber and different materials that was arranged carefully. Their special design is very much based on climatic conditions, thoughtfully constructed and placed into the landscape to take best advantage of the sun, shade, wind and ventilation, in addition, sometimes the roof empties or filters natural light as an aesthetic expression. Another commentator Catherine Stack, has similar opinion with Goad, she agreed that the intimate relationship to the surrounding environment and landscape is the most important tectonic feature of Stutchbury’s architecture. Stutchbury’s notion of ‘people and places’ have played a significant role in his design approach, according to Goad, the term ‘places’ refers to the constant partnership between architecture and its surrounding environment. Being some of Stutchbury’s most notable projects, the Wedge House in Whale Beach and the Bay house in Watsons Bay, have shown clear evidence of the impact of the tectonic tradition.
The Wedge House located in the dynamic coastline of Sydney, sited within a steep rocky site which was once the entry driveway for a grander occupation. It is said that the Wedge House is an ambitious building that engaged and responded to the difficult site that is the dynamic coastline of Sydney. The building was designed with the notion of transforming the rooms into a platform for observation, a motionless element in a dynamic