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Street Theatre in Indesign

Stephen Crafti visits the new Bird de la Coeur studio in Melbourne for Indesign Magazine.

Street Theatre in Indesign


December 3rd, 2008

This article appears in the November Issue#35 of Indesign Magazine, in stores now. Subscribe here. Photography by Emma Cross.

Using a selection of re-cycled furniture and materials from its previous office, Melbourne-based, architecture practice, Bird de la Coeur, has moved into a new studio. Stephen Crafti visits and finds a space that engages with the street.

With 14 staff, the previous office of Bird de la Coeur Architects was ‘closing in’. While the converted warehouse in Albert Park had served well, it was time to look for new, larger premises. “We’ve moved from 140 square metres to almost 400 square metres,” says architect Vanessa Bird, co-director of the practice.

The new office, in Southbank, Melbourne, was customised to suit the practice’s operational style – often in teams with staff involved in various stages of each project. “This isn’t the type of office where people sit in front of a computer, cut off from decisions made about each project. It’s always a collaborative approach,” says Bird.

While the 1960s office at Southbank provided Bird de la Coeur with sufficient space, its form was fairly crude. A steel roller door provided the main access point, appropriate to the manufacturing business which once occupied the building.

“We appreciated the open spaces, but we needed two separate meeting rooms. We also wanted to communicate architecture to the street, without having our shingle too obvious,” says Bird.

The roller door was retained in the fit-out, but is only used to lock up at night. A new picture window now fills almost the entire wall…

Read the rest of this article and many more in Issue #35 of Indesign. Available from all good newsagents and book stores.



emma cross, bird de la coeur

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