The founding director of Carterwilliamson Architects and NSW Chapter President of the Australian Institute of Architects has upped his efforts and bid to save Sydney’s Sirius apartment block from demolition.
Shaun Carter has been the Chair and public face for the Save our Sirius foundation since its conception, using his status and reputation to lobby government to honour recommendations from the Heritage Council to list the brutalist housing block on the State Heritage Register and reconsider its plans to sell it without heritage protection.
He has taken it to the streets, his social media accounts and to public events to ensure his message is loud and clear: to knock down the Tao Gofers-design brutalist landmark and others like it would be to erase an important part of our history and culture.
This is also the major theme of his Ted X Sydney talk delivered in November 2016 which is now available online via the organisation’s website.
Carter puts forward a case for the preservation, adaptation and reuse of brutalist architecture that is underpinned by the assertion that all buildings and their architectural styles should be considered cultural artefacts, or “vessels of our story”, and therefore require protection for the sake of ensuring that story is not lost for the sake of quick financial gains.
“These buildings contain the stories of who we are, where we’ve come from and where we’re going,” he says.
“And if we keep on erasing these modern beauties, these brutalist beauties, we start to lose our storyline… or what I call our missing middle.”
Key to his argument is that the NSW Government’s opinion of the Sirius building is superficial and subjective, and that it has not been given the same cultural valuation as other Sydney landmarks which pre-date it.
Watch Carter’s Ted X Sydney talk below:
The Save our Sirius foundation has a long list of ambassadors which includes National President of the Australian Institute of Architects, Ken Maher, Anthony Burk, head of the architecture faculty at the University of Technology Sydney, and the original Sirius architect, Tao Gofers.