The House of the Victorian Government Architect

Alessandro Castiglioni

Supervisor: Dr. Michael Spooner

The House of the Victorian Government Architect is a fictocritical thought experiment exploring the consequences of an inversion of the relationship between architecture and power in a local context. By acknowledging and exaggerating the skills of synthesis and the multi-disciplinary expertise of the Architect as a professional, the definition of ‘Architect’ is pushed from the realm of the built environment to the one of decision making. An alternative history emerges, where architecture and politics merge into a fictional government authority in charge of legislative architecture. Architects are now public servants and congregate in the Middle House, a third technocratic assembly arbitrating the parliamentary procedures of the Upper House and the Lower House.

The shift to an Architecture Technocracy is legitimized through a holistic redevelopment of Parliament Hill. Parliament House is completed, the fences are removed, and an acropolis is given to Melbourne. The civic precinct collects the urban and architectural axis of the city and redirects them towards a new architecture of governance. Through oblique gestures, the hill is sculpted by the axis, giving form to a geological architecture where infrastructure, landscape, interior and heritage collapse into one.

The hill is the building, and the building is the hill.

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