Studio

Since 1999 MWA has been winning design awards + competitions for Multi-Residential Housing, Interiors, Small Projects, Heritage, Art and Urban Design.

Our track record of AIA, AILA and PIA awards is a testament to the design capability of the studio to work on a range of project scaled and typologies. The common thread to all these projects is an abiding interest in city-shaping and place-making projects.

At the heart of MWA’s approach is an appreciation of place and program. Through research, analysis and an understanding of historic models and types, key design principles are developed. These principles provide a founding framework for the design, which develops with a further layer of query, play and testing. Ultimately a conceptual diagram is sought. One which can ground a unifying design idea through contending priorities, stakeholder and technical requirements, regardless of scale or complexity. Much like the sculptural figure that is rolled down the hill, the arms fall off followed by legs and finally the head… till all you are left with is a torso…

We try to make a good torso…balancing between the poetic and the pragmatic, the rational and robust, where disparate parts are coordinated and organised to create a unified and robust whole.

Collaboration

Our experience in over 20 years of practice has shown that the most successful projects are those built on respectful and trusting collaborations between architect, client and builder. We are interested in creating such relationships in which there is trust about what each party brings to the process and an implicit agreement about the quality of the project. The design of architectural projects is inherently complex, involving a raft of technical consultant and client input, in an iterative process.

To repeat this process a 2nd, 3rd or even 4th time makes the process considerably more efficient, with greater potential to produce a quality outcome.

Many of MWA’s award-winning projects have been the result of this process, each project an improvement and refinement on the last. Our culture of collaboration begins in the studio – an open-plan space shared with other creative practices, collectively known as ‘Studio 5’.

Through the sharing of resources, exchange of ideas, joint design critiques and cooperative learning, Studio 5 is a place of mutual critique and diverse discussion around city-making, development, art and design.

Complex Design

Architectural projects of scale are necessarily complex, and it is to this complexity that design can add value. Design can synthesise complex information, services, and programmatic requirements into a unified, coherent, and legible whole. It can also bring delight and meaning, transcending the program of any brief and, as a result, transform infrastructure into city artefact or housing into place. At the core of any successful development, is the importance of people and their experiences.

MWA’s record of award-winning projects, (more than a dozen from the AIA and AILA), ranges from the metropolitan scale of the North-West Metro, to the neighbourhood scale of the Woolloomooloo Apartments and Jacaranda Square at Olympic Park, to the intimacy of the Laneway Studio. All are testament to design adding value and to leaving an enduring legacy of memorable places within the city.

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