Esteemed Australian architect Dr Enrico Taglietti has died aged 93. 

Taglietti had a significant presence in Australian architecture, and in particular, Canberran architecture. He was known to work outside the mainstream, including strong philosophic, aesthetic and formal qualities in his structures. 

Taglietti arrived in Australia as a young graduate in the 1950s, and settled in Canberra, which at the time had only 40,000 residents. His first impression was "the sort of emptiness which was very conductive to creation".

As an immigrant, Taglietti was able to see Australia with clarity. Indeed, he continued the tradition of other successful immigrant architects such as Harry Seidler, Frederick Romberg and Romaldo Guirgola. 

Enrico Taglietti at work. Image credit: National Portrait Gallery

Some of Taglietti’s most notable designs include the McKeown House (1965), the Church of St Anthony (1965) and the Embassy of Italy Chancellery (1974). Notable public buildings include Dickson Library (1969), St Kilda Library in Melbourne (1972), Giralang Primary School and Preschool (1975), Apostolic Nunciature (1978), the Australian War Memorial  Repository (1979), and the Forrest Early Childhood Centre in Canberra (1991).

Australian-War-Memorial-Annex-1979-Enrico-Taglietti-Photo-Darren-Bradley.jpgThe Australian War Memorial Annex, 1979. Photography by Darren Bradley

In 1965, Taglietti was commissioned by the Order of St Vincent de Paul to complete his only major church, the 600-seat St Anthony’s Catholic Church at Marsfield in Sydney. In 1978, he also completed the Apostolic Nunciature in Red Hill ACT and received a Papal Knighthood of St Gregory the Great from the Pope for his work. In 2014, in recognition of his contribution to ACT architecture, the Australian Institute of Architecture’s ACT chapter named a category award in his honour: the Enrico Taglietti Award for Educational Architecture.

"The passing of Dr Enrico Taglietti is time to reflect on the immense contribution and influence of a passionate immigrant architect who chose Canberra as his hometown. His beautiful idiosyncratic buildings have forever changed Canberra’s built environment and leave a lasting legacy for generations to enjoy,” says ACT chapter president, Philip Leeson. 

"We have lost a great visionary and professional but know that his work will inspire generations of architects to come."

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