Edward Lukac, the National Conference Event Correspondent for Architectural Window Systems (AWS), attended the 2016 National Architecture Conference held recently in Adelaide.

The creative directors of the National Conference titled ‘How Soon Is Now’ set a course seeking to “explore architecture’s agency and acknowledge how we are responding to diverse ways of working... to develop this agency of architecture".

Day one of the journey was marked by a myriad of quotable quotes such as references by the creative directors to Adolf Loos’ “The speed of cultural development is hampered by the stragglers. I am living, say, in 1912, my neighbour around 1900, and that man over there in 1880. It is a misfortune for a state if the culture of its inhabitants stretches over too great a time span".

Nasrine Seraji compared New York city blocks to a sirloin steak (meaty), Paris to a sausage (anywhere you cut it, it is the same) and Rotterdam to a lamb chop (tries to be a steak but everything is concentrated on the periphery) while Vicente Guallart described Barcelona as a “network of neighbourhoods, a collage”.

However regardless of whether it was Nasrine’s use of social, cultural and ecological aspects as parameters defining the brief, Vicente’s understanding of the nature of Barcelona and its “great traditions in urbanism, innovation and the organisation of urban habitat” and his suggestion that Barcelona was historically familiar with the weaving together of different strata of society, the description of her role by Sadie Morgan as ensuring the grand plan is connected to the lived experience of people that interact with the infrastructure, Jeffrey Shumaker talking about the opportunities provided by “celebrating the character and demographic potential of the many generic areas of the city”, the Blue Elephant Jetlagged Julie Eizenberg describing the embodiment of social design principles within successful built projects or finally David Sanderson taking a world view and expanding on the ability of socially connected, robust communities, to cope and ultimately recover in times of crisis (heatwaves, terror threats) - it was the questions relating to the Spirit of a Place, in all its forms that defined the design thinking that informed the delivery of solutions that might be judged by those who utilised that place to be successful and allowed that Spirit of Place to continue developing.

Edward Lukac is the State Manager of Archicentre SA since 2009, AIS SA Chapter councillor since 2013 and AIA residential task force member. He regularly presents architecturally related public workshops and seminars to both adults and children aiming to engage the public with architecture. Edward has been Principal of ELA since 1992 - providing cost effective architectural residential solutions because good design changes lives.