On the 29th of January, the Bundanon Art Museum and Bridge for Creative Learning opened its doors.
The museum will boast three exhibit seasons while hosting learning programs and artists in residency, including exhibitions of First Nations artists, as well as other contemporary and modern works.
This beautiful building was designed by architect Kerstin Thompson in collaboration with Wraights Associates with Craig Burton, landscape architects, and the sustainable design engineers at Atelier 10.
According to architect Kerstin Thompson, the ecology of the site was at the centre of her designs, and her goal was to use the visitors' senses to heighten their appreciation and experience of the surrounding natural landscape.
“The design is driven by Bundanon's main imperative, as established by the Boyd family, to foster an appreciation for and understanding of landscape and art,” she said. “Both the Art Museum and Bridge respond to current and future climatic conditions, with inspiration drawn from rural Australia’s trestle flood bridges.”
The project, in being actively conscious of the architecture’s relationship with the surrounding water and ecosystems, is in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals for Clean Water and Sanitation, Affordable and Clean Energy and Climate Action.
Bundanon was gifted by Arthur and Yvonne Boyd to the Australian people in 1993 with the goal that the centre would not only be a hub for education and the arts, but also that it could explore the history and culture of the First Nations with whom they engage, all while protecting the landscape.
Apart from the museum's stunning modern design, the building makes a revolutionary response to climate change. Not only is the museum going to operate with a net zero energy target, but its architecture will allow for natural water systems to flow uninterrupted while being flooded, while also being fireproof. The buildings were set up to minimise the clearing of forests and bushfires.
All artworks will be stored in an underground building that protects them from changing climate change conditions through thermal stability in the Art Museum and Collection Store. Here, many of Arthur Boyd’s archives and the art pieces developed in the residency program are stored and kept safe.
The Bridge is powered by solar panels and was built from local materials with reduced use of fossil fuel sources during the build. The museum also harvests, stores and treats rainwater in a 300kl tank using blackwater, and the buildings are heated and cooled with geothermal array feeding.
The inaugural "From Impulse to Action" exhibition will run until 12 June 2022, which will feature Arthur Boyd’s works as well as commissions from several other Australian artists.
Learn more about the project here.