NGV Australia is hosting a unique exhibition that explores the design and construction of the new Australian Islamic Centre in Newport, Victoria.
Designed by Glenn Murcutt AO, Australia’s most internationally celebrated architect in collaboration with Hakan Elevli of Melbourne practice Elevli Plus and the Newport Islamic Council, the Australian Islamic Centre is the subject of the new exhibition at NGV Australia. Titled Glenn Murcutt: Architecture of Faith, the exhibition will reveal the history, process and people behind the Australian Islamic Centre through 200 original sketches by Murcutt, architectural drawings and plans, photography, scale models, life-size building elements and documentary footage.
Murcutt devoted nearly a decade to the project, working with Elevli and the Newport Islamic Council to create a contemporary Australian mosque and Islamic centre. Designed without the traditional minaret or dome, the mosque challenges assumptions of historical Islamic architecture and puts forward a new architectural language for Australian Islam.
NGV Director Tony Ellwood explains that Architecture of Faith allows visitors to understand Murcutt’s unique and multi-layered design approach through the lens of one project. Describing the Australian Islamic Centre as a “significant building”, he added that the exhibition explored the project from multiple perspectives to reveal the contribution that architecture could make to a community and its ability to foster intercultural understanding.
Due to open in late 2016, the Australian Islamic Centre has involved significant consultation with local Islamic architects, Imams and community leaders and, importantly, been funded and built by the local community.
Glenn Murcutt: Architecture of Faith is on display at the NGV Australia from 9 August 2016 until 19 February 2017. Open daily, 10am-5pm. Entry is free.
In Conversation: Glenn Murcutt and Hakan Elevli on Tuesday 9 August at 6.30pm
Moderated by Ewan McEoin, The Hugh Williamson Senior Curator of Contemporary Design and Architecture, the session will focus on the story behind the Australian Islamic Centre’s ten-year design and construction process.
Image: Glenn Murcutt AO, Sydney architect