Sean Godsell Architects
Sean Godsell B.Arch (Hons) Melbourne University, M.Arch RMIT University, FRAIA
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RMIT University Design Hub
Melbourne, Australia, 2012
The purpose of the Design Hub is to provide accommodation in one building for a diverse range of design research and post graduate education. The Hub provides a collegial research base for post graduates investigating areas of design ranging from architecture, landscape architecture and interior design to industrial, aeronautical, automotive and computer based disciplines. Research groups have the ability to locate and fine tune their accommodation within warehouses – open plan spaces where research teams can set up and tailor their work environment to suit their particular needs. The plan of the Hub acknowledges the desire for incidental cross pollination where researchers from one field encounter those from completely unrelated other fields as part of their day to day use of the building. An exhibition space and design archive provide a public interface with both industry and research outcomes. These spaces combined with a variety of lecture, seminar and multi purpose rooms facilitate high level exchanges in a number of forums.
St Andrews Beach House
St Andrews Beach, Victoria, 2006
St Andrew’s Beach on Victoria’s Mornington Peninsula is unusual in that it is one of the few locations in Australia where construction is permitted right on the foreshore. Normally the coastline is protected as government owned land however in St Andrew’s there are buildings sited on the beach which face the Southern Ocean. Our site is elevated and exposed to magnificent ocean views and in winter, gale force winds. The house has a protective outer skin made from perforated oxidized steel panels which hinge open to form brise soleil shutters. The building is elevated on columns with parking and storage underneath. The programme called for a simple three bedroom family House with a separate Guest House. The plan has three discrete elements ‘ a communal kitchen/meals/living space, children’s rooms and parents room. Each space is accessed from outside via a promenade deck. To move from room to room one has to go outside and then inside thereby being exposed to the heat of summer and the extremes of winter. This strategy was requested by the client as a way of using the weekend house to re-humanise oneself after a week of office work. It serves to de-sanitise the controlled 22degree C built environment to which we have all grown accustomed and to remind the occupants of their own fraility.
Woodleigh School Science Building
Baxter, Victoria, 2002
A 60m x 20m single storey, steel structure is embedded into the side of a gently sloping site to form the eastern edge of a new quadrangle at Woodleigh School. The simple portal frame which is a combined oxidised steel and ironbark structure forms covered ways on the east and west sides of the building and doubles as a shading device. The building is designed as a ‘Gallery of Science’ – where the day to day activities of the users of the building are put on display for all to see, the aim of which is to stimulate and generate interest in the students by encouraging interaction. The classrooms themselves become daily experiments in education, housed in a warm and nurturing environment and protected from the weather using sound design principles. The new Science Building forms the eastern flank of the ‘North Lawn’ – a new major outdoor space for senior students. The conventional quadrangle model of the original school is repeated in this gesture and the library becomes a pivotal building to both old and new outdoor spaces. In that sense the building is seen as an ordering device for this corner of the campus. The building is low and cuts into the slope which is considered to be the continuation of the hills to the north. Grass moguls are a deterrent to games of football and cricket – encouraging students to see this area as a quiet, more study oriented part of the campus.