“Play is obviously very serious to its participants; they strive very earnestly and with great effort at their play and sports, and their efforts produce important personal and social outcomes that cannot be gotten easily in any other way.
In addition, there are many societies in which play is an integral part of religious and work ceremonies; where the duality of work versus play, so often taken for granted in Western eyes, is simply not valid”
BRIAN SUTTON-SMITH The Ambiguity of Play.
I don’t know where to start in the design of a gymnasium and oftentimes technical briefs belie relevant consideration; the architect surrendering at the point where ‘everything works’.
On the one hand everything has measure, a height, a width a surface, the sound; but nothing can be furthest away from the requirements of an ambitious architectural project such as this; gained through modest means.
For in the end, this is a project for school children to enable the education of a certain rigour in their disciplines for life itself.
And so it is noted that the technical and environmental mandates on a project such as this gymnasium are now many and tedious; rendering challenges any optimism about architectural space and order.
So – away from all that then, the building is one which develops a rendering of natural light that enables its simple beam plywood structure to develop into a rhythm; translated in turn into a form clad with tilt-up concrete sheets standing unambiguously in line like toy soldiers.
A building as a result of the Federal Government ‘Building Education Revolution’; the money came at a good time for All Saints – who chose to make this project the second stage in an extensive master-plan for All Saints Grammar School at Belmore.