The Greater Shepparton City Council has announced the names of five architectural teams who have been shortlisted to develop concept designs for the proposed Shepparton Art Museum (SAM). The two-stage SAM design competition is endorsed by the Australian Institute of Architects to select an architectural design for the new museum.

The first stage of the Shepparton Art Museum Architecture Competition drew 88 applications through the Council’s tendering process with a seven-member jury shortlisting the five teams on key parameters including Design Approach (50%), Capability (30%) and Experience (20%). The jury consisted of professionals drawn from the arts, architecture/design, academia, Indigenous architecture and related industries.

The shortlisted architects are Denton Corker Marshall, John Wardle Architects, Kerstin Thompson Architects, Lyons, and MvS Architects.

According to Director Community Kaye Thomson, all five design concepts will be put on public exhibition in January 2017 with the winner to be announced in April 2017. Each of the five architect teams will be provided with a more detailed brief and paid an honorarium of $7,000 to assist with the development of the concept design. The winning entry will receive a prize of $10,000.

Thomson added that the competition will result in a commission to the successful entrant, who will be appointed to work with Greater Shepparton City Council and SAM stakeholders to further develop the design.

Profiles of shortlisted teams

Denton Corker Marshall 

An internationally recognised design practice known for creative, distinctive and responsive design, Denton Corker Marshall is a three-time winner of the country’s most prestigious architectural award, the Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Public Buildings for Melbourne Exhibition Centre, Melbourne Museum and Anzac Hall Australian War Memorial Canberra.

John Wardle Architects

A highly experienced architecture firm that has twice been awarded the Sir Zelman Cowen Award for Public Buildings at the Royal Australian Institute of Architects National Architecture Awards, John Wardle Architects (JWA) has worked on several significant cultural institutions such as museums, botanic gardens, universities and national parks. Some of their prestigious projects include the Bruny Island Community Hall in Tasmania, Melbourne School of Design (creative hub for University of Melbourne), Australian Garden in Cranbourne, The Nigel Peck Centre for Melbourne Grammar School, The Hawke Building in Adelaide, Samstag Museum in Adelaide, and Kaurna Building for UniSA.

Kerstin Thompson Architects

Specialising in creating immersive, restorative, innovative and meaningful places that uniquely integrate landscape, interior and architecture, Kerstin Thompson Architects stand out for their clarity of approach and sensitivity to place. Recent projects include redevelopment of Broadmeadows Town Hall, Victorian College of the Arts School of Art in Southbank, Marysville Police Station and Birralee Primary School.


Comprising of Taylor Cullity Lethlean, Maudie Palmer and Greenaway Architects, this design alliance has a wealth of skills, expertise and experience in the design of contemporary art galleries and museums, the design and delivery of local government and community projects, and demonstrated capability to integrate art, architecture and landscape into a unique design response. Some of their projects include a new ‘vertical campus’ building for RMIT University in Melbourne, a recently completed ‘vertical community’ building for the City of Brimbank, The Housemuseum in Melbourne, Koori Heritage Trust in Federation Square, Yagan Square in Perth and a new Contemporary Art Museum in Melbourne’s East.

MvS Architects

Led by Jan van Schaik, MvS has experience in the design of galleries and exhibition spaces with the firm having delivered projects with a total construction value of over $40 million. Backed by a track record of designing unique and compelling award-winning public buildings and public realm landscapes, the firm’s successes include the Edithvale Wetlands Centre for Melbourne Water, Victorian College of Arts library and the central curriculum building, and RMIT University Library at RMIT’s major Swanston Street building.