Sydney’s got a Gehry

I actually took a series of shots of the University of Technology Sydney (UTS)’s new Dr Chau Chak Wing Building in September, but for a combination of reasons did not get around to posting them. (I did not even post them on Instagram, which surprises me greatly.) In September, the building was still somewhat surrounded by cranes and hoarding panels, and lots of workmen and women – perhaps that contributed to my disinclination to use the shots. I strolled by a couple or so times after that but did not feel compelled to take any further photos. However, this morning, I decided I would go and have a look.

UTS-Chau Chak Wing building (5)

UTS-Chau Chak Wing building (2)

Most of the external work appears to have been completed – to this untrained eye, at least – although I’m sure there will be a few tweaks and finishes still to be done ahead of the building’s official opening next February.

UTS-Chau Chak Wing building (4)

I’d hazard a guess that even the non-archi-lovers of this city could not have failed to notice this striking building. Its curvy, undulating exterior reminds me of melting chocolate on a fancy cake, although the most common words used to describe the building seem to be “crumpled” and “paper bag”. Whatever, I think it’s fantastic that Sydney’s got a Gehry.

I’m sure part of my fascination with the building is because I work in a conventional tower block in the CBD. Although it was built in the last decade and features lifts encased in glass which either thrill or terrify those who ride them for the first time, it’s pretty ‘norm-core’ as far as office buildings go.

UTS-Chau Chak Wing building (1)

Only time will tell if the building becomes as famous and iconic as Sydney’s other landmarks such as the Opera House. For now, it’s an interesting and arresting facade which causes my brain to go off on all manner of tangents, including the following: “So that’s what you get for A$180 million!”… “Groovy brickwork!”… “What does it look like inside?”… “I want to visit all the other Gehry buildings in the world!”

UTS-Chau Chak Wing building (3)


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