Divine Challenge


Pippita and Lynne have set their own challenge. Over the holidays they  sculpted a stairwell rail that evokes a twisting vine. Pippita came up with the idea after she heard that the garden between the spiral shell and original building will feature rainforest plants. The stairwell, at the lower end of this garden, with carry this theme up the stairs.

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Recycle Reuse Reimagine

The large quantities of concrete used in the construction of the new performance space may seem to run contrary to the school’s commitment to use materials with a low embodied energy. Unlike cob, which is mixed from material mostly found on site, a great deal of energy goes into the production of cement. But fear not, dear reader. The cement used in the spiral shell was once waste. After striking a deal with the suppliers who provide concrete for the roadworks on the Great Western Highway, Jason was given the leftovers. What would have been waste, earmarked for landfill, is now the footing of the new building.

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From The Ground Up

A performance space and kindy is emerging from the ground. The concrete footing is laid, the steel beams are up and the purlins are set. The Spiral Shell is taking form.

Designed by Sunlab’s Simon Hearn, the small circular room at the top end is more that an eccentric technical room but the building’s structural core. From here, the beams radiate out, forming the frame of a performance space that will seat about 140.

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The steel caterpillar awakens

Often at the Kindlehill building site, heavy objects need to be moved. In keeping with an effort to keep carbon dioxide emissions low, and empower the humans working on-site rather than employing excess machinery, several large steel beams have been moved by many able bodies over the last week or so. This video captures one such moment, where workers formed the “legs” of what became known as a “steel caterpillar”, as it inched its way to a new resting place.

The Chookenheim?

Pundits call it the “Guggenheim of Chook Houses”, breathlessly comparing the iconic art gallery’s spiral design to Kindlehill’s chicken house (well at least Dave and myself did over a glass of wine).

Although there is one noticeable difference. Whereas Frank Lloyd Wright’s utilized a gentle helical spiral for the gallery’s interior, architect Jamie Brennan and the Landscaping Group applied the Golden Mean – a geometric ratio based on the proportions of nature – to the school’s chook palace.

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