A contemporary twist on the original clinker brick has proven successful for Bates Smart architects, with their choice of brick blends for UNSW’s Kensington Colleges earning them the Grand Prix Award at the 2014 Think Brick Awards.

Five winners from the Commercial, Residential, Landscape, Roof Tiling Excellence and Masonry categories were chosen from 281 entries this year, The UNSW Kensington Colleges took the Commercial Award along with the Grand Prix Award.

The 2014 Think Brick Award winners:

Horbury Hunt Commercial Award winner and Grand Prix winner

UNSW Kensington Colleges (NSW) by Bates Smart

^A 60/30 blend of Dynasty Brushed Leather and Karrington Silver is common across all Colleges. The remaining 10% come from the Burlesque series.

The redevelopment of the Kensington Colleges consists of three traditional colleges, two new colleges and a university teaching space. Each college is defined by a 5-6 storey linear volume and finished in either of three bricks from Austral.

“Courtyards are framed by facetted walls of glazed brickwork which present a playful expression of colour, texture, light and shade. In contrast, and in response to the mid-century brickwork of the surrounding buildings, the rectilinear external facades use a blend of three shades of face brick as a contemporary interpretation of the original clinker brick,” said the architects.

^The rectilinear external facades respond to the mid-century brickwork of the surrounding buildings by using a blend of three shades of face brick. This blend consists of a 60/30/10 mix of Bowral Purpose-Made Commons, Simmental Silver and Ultra Smooth Tempo. Images: Peter Bennetts

Horbury Hunt Residential Award winner

Aperture House (Qld) by Cox Rayner Architects and Twofold Studio. 

Images: Christopher Frederick Jones

The residential project winner by Cox Rayner Architects and Twofold Studio uses a variety of bricks to dramatise spaces in perforations, patterns, niches, plinths and floor surfaces.

Aperture House comprises a variety of bricks from Austral and Bowral and was celebrated by the jury for its artful and finely crafted brickwork.

“This humble worker’s cottage has been deftly extended. Aperture House is a home for a lifetime that celebrates the activities and beauty of daily life. A series of artful and finely crafted brick elements create spaces, edges and openings that are inherently adaptable and atmospheric.”

Kevin Borland Masonry Award winner

Clayfield House (Qld) by Richards and Spence


Images: Alicia Taylor

The 2014 Masonary award went to Richards and Spence for their Clayfield House project in Queensland.  

The architects chose Adbri 10.01 Smooth coloured blocks in Steel colour for the exterior fa├žade and a variety of block, stone and reversed brick veneer throughout the rest of the project.

“At the Clayfield House concrete masonry is imbued with a luxurious quality, elevating its status. The subtle, textural contrasts and modular interplay gives the blockwork a warm glow and creates an elegant backdrop to daily life,” cited the Jury.

Bruce Mackenzie Landscape Award winner

Devonport Surf Life Saving Club Precinct (Tas) by Hansen Partnership

The Devonport Surf Life Saving club was the first officially recognised surf club in Tasmania. Located at the iconic Mersey Bluff Plaza on Tasmania's North West coast, it is a popular spot for swimming, sunbathing, picnics in the park, and Surf Life Saving.

The upgrade to the club house and surrounding facilities commenced in the middle of January 2011 and includes a number of family friendly sites including a new playground, BBQ facilities, public plaza and car park created as a part of the redevelopment.

The public area and walk way consists of 6,500sqm of Adbri Masonry's Trihex and Quartz Stone pavers that are patterned in flowing waves, and blend with the ocean and beach environments.

In order to achieve the distinctive design, Adbri Masonry's Ulverstone plant produced the uniquely coloured Oatmeal, Salmon, Sandstone and Desert Sand pavers, which were installed in alternating layers to create the representation of flowing waves.

Roof Tiling Excellence Award

A House with Tiles On It (NSW) by Welsh + Major Architects

Images: Ben Hosking

A House with Tiles On It is a new pavilion addition to a Sydney home that houses kitchen/dining space. Being on a corner site the new pavilion is visible from the street and is intended to act as a stitch in the streetscape.

The pavilion responds to the requirements of context using a familiar material, the humble roof tile, to develop a patina and depth, and to become a contemporary solution to a project in a conservation context

“The conceptual directness of this project belies its extraordinary sophistication. This is an innovative addition to a federation house that respects the qualities of the neighbourhood and reenergises the building for a new generation.”

The full list of finalists and entries can be view here: