Thursday 18 November – Friday 21 January 2022
5.00 pm (AEDT)


Design Speaks Virtual Portal
Virtual Event


Ticket sales for this event are closed.

Program Info

Architecture can be a catalyst for transformation at all scales. The Architecture Symposium: Beyond the Building presents a curated selection of contemporary Australian architects whose public projects have an impact that is beyond the built form itself. In these buildings, form and use, aesthetics and technology, concept and program, ethics and immediacy, private need and public good often meet head-on. Discussion will highlight works that have synthesized these often-conflicting factors, extending the brief to unlock remarkable results that have a ripple effect on the building’s context and its community.


Major partner

Earn CPD Points

Download CPD Questions and Learning Outcomes

Session 2 CPD – Emotional Connection


Sophia Buckle

Event Coordinator Header Image Church of the Living God by Candalepas Associates. Photography: Rory Gardiner.


  • Emotional Connection
    At its highest level, architecture can stir the emotions and induce feelings of joy, elation, calmness or solemnity. A visceral response to the built form provides an opportunity to deepen cultural understanding, embed memories and open the mind to new possibilities. In this session, we explore projects that have evoked emotive or spiritual responses and left a lasting impression.
  • 12.50 pm Welcome
    Log in to the Design Speaks Virtual Portal
  • 1.00 pm Connecting with Country
    Dillon Kombumerri, Office of the Government Architect NSW
  • 1.15 pm Bundanon Trust, Nowra
    Kerstin Thompson, Kerstin Thompson Architects
  • 1.30 pm Church of the Living God, Sydney
    Angelo Candalepas, Candalepas Associates
  • 1.45 pm Phoenix Central Park, Sydney
    Camilla Block, Durbach Block Jaggers
  • 2.00 pm Dissection
    An hour-long panel discussion with Dillon Kombumerri, Kerstin Thompson, Angelo Candalepas and Camilla Block, moderated by Abbie Galvin and William Smart.
  • 3.00 pm Session 2 concludes
    Return to the Design Speaks home page to see the full program.
  • Session 2 CPD – Emotional Connection


Dillon Kombumerri

Principal Architect, Government Architect New South Wales

Dillon Kombumerri is a principal architect for the Government Architect NSW. Originally from Queensland, he grew up on North Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah) and is a Yugumbir descendent from the Gold Coast.

With over 25 years of experience in architectural practice, Dillon brings his own unique indigenous perspective to the design of buildings and places. Through the design process he always strives to improve the health and wellbeing of Country and indigenous communities.

More About Dillon Kombumerri →

Kerstin Thompson

Principal, Kerstin Thompson Architects

Kerstin Thompson is principal of Kerstin Thompson Architects and an adjunct professor at RMIT and Monash Universities. A committed design educator, she regularly lectures and runs studios at various schools across Australia and New Zealand. In recognition for the work of her practice, contribution to the profession and tertiary education, Kerstin was elevated to Life Fellow by the Australian Institute of Architects in 2017, appointed Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 2022 and awarded the Gold Medal – the Australian Institute of Architects’ highest honour, which recognizes distinguished services – in 2023.

More About Kerstin Thompson →

Angelo Candalepas

Founding Director, Candalepas Associates

Angelo Candalepas graduated from the University of Technology Sydney in 1992. He was made a Life Fellow of the Australian Institute of Architects in 2019.

In 1994 he established his own architecture studio which, in its first months of practice, won an international competition for housing in “The Point” in Sydney’s Pyrmont. The project was the recipient of several awards. Since then, Angelo has won and been shortlisted for several national and international competitions.

More About Angelo Candalepas →

Camilla Block

Director, Durbach Block Jaggers

A director at Durbach Block Jaggers, Camilla has been a design principal for all of the practice’s major projects. She has also taught, lectured, exhibited, judged awards, and been published both nationally and internationally. In 2014, Camilla received an honorary appointment as adjunct professor from the University of Technology Sydney, Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building.

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Abbie Galvin

NSW Government Architect, Government Architect NSW

Abbie Galvin is the NSW Government Architect. Prior to this appointment, she worked for 30 years in architectural practice on projects across a range of sectors that have been highly awarded, published and recognized internationally for bringing fresh approaches to common project types.

Abbie is passionate about the public domain, and the ability of architecture and our built environment to positively affect human behaviour, the way people interact, and the manner in which institutions and organizations operate.

More About Abbie Galvin →

William Smart

Founder and creative director, Smart Design Studio

William Smart is the founder and creative director of Smart Design Studio, which takes a holistic approach, combining architectural and interior design with a passionate attention to detail and an ethos of “architecture from the inside out.” Over the past 23 years, Smart Design Studio has delivered a wide range of projects, from large-scale masterplans, cultural buildings, offices and workplaces to private houses and product design.

Smart Design Studio’s buildings have received critical acclaim, with the studio receiving more than 40 international and national awards for architecture, urban design and interior design. William was also the recipient of the People’s Choice Award (The Luminary) at the 2017 Inde Awards. He has taught and lectured across Australia, published written work and is an active participant in charity organizations.

More About William Smart →

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