Architecture - Honours


The circle of speech, daylight floods in, a person talks to an audience in a circular Amphitheatre
The democratic system of today is unsustainable, inequitable and places little value on community, enlightenment, and historical understanding. The Hall of Democracy gives power to the people by being a place of community, learning, reflection, and culture.

Located in the governmental precinct of Brisbane City, it invites individuals, community members, students, and visitors to meet, talk with one another, learn from history, reflect, contemplate, experience culture and be enlightened. Each layer of the building focuses on a different type of being, being in one’s context, being in one’s community and then being with one’s self. The programs, circulation, and spaces of the three levels correspond with these.

Religious Architecture is engaging and considered, through the manipulation of light and sensuous spatial experience it heightens people’s ability to believe in something, connect with stories, learn and be enlightened. The Hall of Democracy similarly uses enhanced, opulent architectural experience to engage its users with their own ideas, others, history, and culture. Current circumstances have made it clear that understanding and responding to history will be integral to democratic progression. We must first understand where we have been, what has worked and what has not, where there is discrimination and broken history before positive change can happen. We must address and be held accountable for our past to improve our future. The building is a physical manifestation of this, responding to and taking inspiration from the heritage-listed Mansions that sit on the north corner of the site.

The flowing, inviting form of the Hall of Democracy juxtaposes the blocky, angular Mansions, creating a complementary effect that enhances each of the building’s beauty and design. The intricate, complex detailing of the Mansions is exaggerated by the smooth, simplistic façade of the Hall, that hovers above the ground. The heaviness of the mansions is amplified, the Hall becoming a release, a breath of fresh air the invites people in.

Presentation Panels

The building at night glows from within, people walk around it and enjoy the reflections in the pool
The Hall of Democracy also takes inspiration from the Mansions, through its material selection and architectural expression. The arches found along the historical façade appear inside the Temple of Water, repurposed as structure to support the undulating roof rather than simply being an architectural detail. The colour of the Mansion’s brick inspired the choice of Corten Steel, a patinaed material that creates a sense of history and strength and allows the buildings to be read together as one.

The perforated steel skirt sits out from the translucent Luxfer Prism Curtain panel system the encases the whole building in a glistening, light manipulating shell. The shell includes a variety of panel types; vertical louvers and a Luxfer prism panel finished in dichroic film. These panels contribute to the ambience of the building and the overall spatial quality. Moreover, the gap between the inner and outer shell provides internal thermal comfort from Brisbane’s subtropical environment. At night, the light from inside travels first through the tinted glass and then the perforated steel, sending out an intricate pattern of light beams, the whole building subtly glowing in the twilight. Its presence as a symbol of democratic progression, historical reflection and enlightenment never diminishing.

1:200 physical model

Video Montage

Claudia Levick

How can existing Architecture be respected, reused, and reconsidered to enhance spatial experience, improve quality of life and contribute to a more sustainable built environment? Claudia finds passion in creating beautiful, sensory, architectural experiences that are rooted in historical understanding, juxtaposition and concept. - -