Author: Charles Pickett

The Designer World Cup

June 7, 2010

The imminent World Cup, kicking off on 11 June, attracts attention in many ways. For many fans the look of the game is almost as important as the way it is played. To some extent this aesthetic attitude is shared by FIFA, which bans advertising from the playing pitch as well as restricting the size and amount of advertising on players’ clothing (no advertising at all is permitted on national team strips).

The Trolley man immortalised

May 24, 2010

Do you remember Joseph Cindric? Probably not, unless I tell you that Joseph (or Josef or Joso or Joe) Cindric was the man who for decades pushed a hand-made trolley around the Sydney CBD. From the 1960s to the 1980s he was as much a part of the city scene as the Town Hall or Hyde Park where he often rambled or slept during the day.

The Dreaming Towers- UTS Towers

March 30, 2010

Source There’s been some publicity lately for a proposal to transform the UTS Tower on Broadway.  The idea is that the building could be clad with a lightweight mesh skin which would collect rain water, generate solar electricity and cool the tower, saving energy.

Barangaroo and Darling Harbour

March 19, 2010

The current debate over the Barangaroo development recalls similar controversies during the 1980s, when the Darling Harbour precinct was being redeveloped. At one stage during the creation of Darling Harbour NSW premier Neville Wran, the main driver of the project, observed sarcastically that ‘we are going to hold a number of competitions for sculpture and civic works and it may well be appropriate that one subject be a white elephant surrounded by knockers rampant’.Both projects are among the numerous port areas recycled into new urban precincts.

Built for the Bush- bush architecture

February 22, 2010

The PHM has contributed several artefacts and photos to the exhibition Built for the Bush, currently touring several NSW museums. Curated by Richard Taylor of the Historic Houses Trust, Built for the Bush displays the environmentally friendly character of early bush architecture and its influence on contemporary architecture.

The 80s revived

January 22, 2010

The Powerhouse is the perfect museum for 'The 80s Are Back'. After all, the museum is itself an artefact of the 80s, one of Sydney's major statements of 'the design decade'. Its interior and exhibition design displayed a level of sophistication and consistency unprecedented in an Australian museum.

Collecting Buildings

January 6, 2010

Framing our private and public worlds, the designed environment is too big a subject to ignore. The Powerhouse collection has plenty of of design drawings, models and photographs, but it also has many of parts of buildings.

Curating the seamy side- historic pubs in sydney

December 28, 2009

These bars were designed for binge drinking, 1930s style. In those days excessive boozing was usually called the six o’clock swill, a feature of NSW pubs from 1916 to 1955, the period when hotels had to close at six o’clock.

Death in the Museum- part two- the crematorium

October 23, 2009

In the first contribution to Death in the Museum, Erika wrote: ‘coffins have traditionally been made to protect the body, and thus been made out of strong materials such as steel and hardwood’. It is interesting that this practice survives because most coffins are burned, not buried.