Jacqueline Lewis, Clayton Performing Arts Precinct 2014
The Performing Thread of the Urban Stage - Clayton Performing Arts Precinct
Collective strength has the power to redefine a region, encouraging growth and mutual benefits by being ‘branded’ a specific precinct. With proposed university, residential and commercial growth, significant retail and amenity will be attracted and the existing campus (currently spatially defined by roads creating large scale segregation) will be transformed into a local activity centre. Though known for science and research, Monash Clayton is a performing arts hub, hosting numerous arts-based practises, which do not have strong visual identity. This intervention proposes venues as incubators for local arts organisations to explore a public presence, revealing the existing arts innovation of the region through strategic creative showcases.
The Clayton Performing Arts Precinct establishes a site for the Monash University Performing Arts Faculty and urban renewal through new public arts facilities. The elements of a traditional performance centre are identified, categorised and strategically distributed through selective new development, adaptive reuse and appropriation of existing underutilised buildings. A centralised faculty building acts as identifier and distributes occupants to each intervention that exists as part of the same performance network whilst establishing its architectural language. The Clayton Performing Arts Precinct encourages the shift in cultural association from campus to major activity precinct as strategically inserting smaller interventions breaks the ‘campus’ approach, encouraging dialogues between parts of agglomerated wholes.