This project aims to open a dialogue between the existing Art Gallery of NSW and its surrounding context. It delivers a sequence of framed visions throughout the entire gallery experience. The central idea of the art museum extension is to centralize the museum experience around a courtyard—an outdoor landscape sculpture gallery. The courtyard interacts with the site typography, pointing towards Woolloomooloo Bay. The courtyard splits into different levels, encouraging people to explore through its different zones. The entrance is covered with trees, and so while visitors walk down to the lower level of the site, the entrance is revealed with an overlooking view of Sydney Harbour and the local Woolloomooloo district context.
Surrounded Frame emerged from the studio, which proposed a significant addition to the Art Gallery of NSW consistent with the brief for a recent competition held for a short-listed group of architects (won by SANAA from Japan). The addition considered the aspirations of the director of the Gallery to include a contemporary gallery in the Domain, an adjacent open site. The program included Aboriginal galleries, a gallery for contemporary art, and educational and reception areas; in all 20,000 sqm of additions. The considerations of historical and contemporary art display, education, urban and landscape design, and cultural heritage enabled a variety of student explorations.