Movie Club: Australian Architecture

The inaugural season of Movie Club presents a documentary series exploring Australian architecture. Each session is followed by conversations with special guests, moderated by Sydney architecture graduate David Neustein.

9 Nov – The edge of the possible: Jørn Utzon and the Sydney Opera House

with special guest filmmaker Daryl Dellora

Please note, online bookings for this event are now closed. Guests are welcome to purchase tickets from The Museum of Sydney on November 9.

Jørn Utzon was awarded first prize in the international architecture competition to design an opera house for Sydney. In 1957 he flew to Australia to begin work on the construction of one of the greatest buildings in Australia and, indeed, one of the finest achievements in modern architecture.

This film charts the dramatic course of the creation of a masterpiece and includes a rare interview with Utzon who reflects on his role in the compelling story of the conception and construction of the Sydney Opera House.

In a distinguished career Utzon received many accolades: the Alvar Aalto Medal, the Order of Australia, the Sonning Prize, the French Legion of Honour and the keys to the City of Sydney. But in February 1966 it was a very different story. In that month his nine years’ work on the Sydney Opera House came to an end. He wrote to the then NSW Minister for Public Works, Davis Hughes, the historic words ‘you have forced me to leave the job’. Utzon left Australia with his young family in April 1966; he has never returned.

This beautifully photographed film charts the triumphant, exhilarating and controversial course of the design and construction of the Sydney Opera House.

The screening will be followed by a Q & A with filmmaker Daryl Dellora

Curated by The Festivalists for Sydney Living Museums



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Life architecturally follows internationally acclaimed husband-and-wife team Robert McBride and Debbie Ryan to discover what inspires their groundbreaking concepts, designs and architecture.

Their outstanding architecture is changing the face of Melbourne and their spiral shaped ‘Klein Bottle house’ received the ultimate accolade: the prestigious World Architecture Festival Award for best residential house in the world.

This dynamic, down-to-earth, married-with-kids couple are leading lights in the modern architectural movement, designing a copper dome-shaped house that fits together like a jigsaw puzzle, a beach house that unfurls from a letterbox and a house extension that resembles a cloud. Many consider their buildings works of art, and as with most art, they’re often controversial.

Life architecturally follows the day-to-day lives of Robert and Debbie over a period of one year, examining the intricacies of their unique working relationship and the inspiration behind their iconic and controversial works.

This intimate documentary reveals the pressures of building a multistorey, twin-tower development and a revolutionary new school in the shape of an infinity symbol, alongside the construction and design of the couple’s new family home. It follows Robert and Debbie as they prepare their pitch to win the contract to design and construct a prestigious new billion-dollar building that will be the biggest cancer care centre in the Southern Hemisphere.

There is a personal reason behind their passion to create a building of hope for cancer patients and their families. The stakes are high. The vision is bold.

The screening will be followed by a Q & A with filmmaker Britt Arthur


See more Home & Architecture

Dates for the next Movie Club: 7 December, 18 January & 8 February
Tickets on sale soon


General $15
Concession/Members $12

Includes free admission to the Museum of Sydney

When & Where

Sunday 9 November 2014 11AM–1PM

Museum of Sydney

Cnr Phillip and Bridge Streets, Sydney, NSW 2000
Museum: 02 9251 5988
The Governors Table: 02 9241 1788