The Intern: Part XII

Thursday, 27th February 2014

David Weir Architects

Mosman Park, Western Australia, Australia


Look at all these houses. Northern-facing glazing with no protection? Scandalous wenches.

It's incredibly easy to lose track of everything - if only I could grow an extra set of arms. And legs. And a body. And a head. I really need a clone of myself. If you're out there reading this and you happen to be in a position where you can make this happen, call me now.

Forgive me for my writing entries as of late - or, should I say, lack thereof. Just under two weeks ago, I was elected to Presidency for The Architecture, Landscape and Visual Arts Student Society of UWA (otherwise known as simply "The ALVA Society") and it's been a bit of a bumpy ride. The ALVA Society has been somewhat neglected for a while, with no leader and no determined end in sight, thanks to a wayward constitution that supported Catch-22 situations. An emergency constitutional amendment petition authorised by the UWA Guild, a general election, and a few BBQs later, I have been successfully installed into the position of "Eternal Fearless and Glorious Father of the Campus". You have all made a terrible mistake.

Anyway, I'll make a post about all this hickle-dee-pickle-dee later on down the track. This is all about the triumphant return of THE INTERN Writing Series! I expect the same level of love and adoration much like Napoleon's victorious march back from Russia in 1812. Lots of casualties; 650,000+ members of the Grande Armée dead, and nothing to show for it besides a neat story and all of Europe hating your guts. Exile does seem like a good deal, all things considered. But who else would be the Father of the People at ALVA? Not the students from the South, that's for sure.

Delicious cladding detail.

I have a thing for anything power related. Must be in my nature.

Thursdays have now become my regular day for David Weir Architects, and while you may not worry too much about it, I now have to go through and change all the days and dates on my scheduled posts (Oh yes, there's scheduled posts. More on that in a scheduled post in the future). Thanks for making me work harder. Tuesdays are out of the question, now with university classes laying it thick and heavy on me on Tuesdays - not to mention the weekly meetings for ALVA, SONA, AIA, the faculty, Guild, or anyone else who has beef with me. David usually starts his Thursdays off with a weekly site visit to The Exploding! Shed House, and this week was no different.

I've learnt quite a bit from this project. Exploding! was one of the first projects by David that I noticed and was following from my computer chair. It's right around the corner from my house, but it's not in a location that's easily spotted. In fact, it's hidden away in a myriad of withered 60's houses, set back slightly alongside the railway line. I haven't done proper calculations, but I can estimate that the area of the house footprint is somewhere between 'tiny' and 'closet'. But even with no finished floors, hardly any roofing and half of the pre-fabricated steel structure still to receive exterior cladding, the house feels complete; it feels like a home. I have the feeling that Karin - the client - feels somewhat the same way. She loves to represent the project in a humourous light through her illustration of the processes. Good clients make all the difference.

Karin Hearn (Client), Lauren O'Brien (Graduate Architect) and David Weir (Principal Architect) on the site of Exploding!

We spent most of the morning on the Exploding! site. Lunch followed, where we discussed my habits and why I'll get fat one day (The office is a harsh place. The rumours are true - David makes someone cry every hour). The afternoon was filled with documentation and emails and phone calls and paperwork and mark-ups and sketching and drawing and eating and drinking and overall, architecture. This is architecture. This is why I'm at university. This is why I'm doing this. I lust for it, I desire it, it doesn't let me sleep at night and it's what gets me up the next morning. I love it.

Gee Willikers! A throwback to THE INTERN: Part III with the same pareidolia photo at a different stage of construction.

Future editions of THE INTERN will be less typing and more photos. In my new roles at university, I find it extremely difficult to juggle between being an intern, a President, a student representative, a mentor, a mediator, a listener, an advocate, and most importantly: a friend, and a student. It has come to a point where I needed to make decisions as to what flaming swords I'll be juggling this year, and those decisions weren't made lightly. Things were dropped. But, I did what I had to do to ensure that the sharpest swords stay in the air and out of my vital organs. I made the right decision for myself, but that's not to say that there were no injuries in the process. Expect a little less from me this year on the writing front, but be completely understanding and aware that I won't let this fall over that easily. My posts won't contain university work (In fact, I'm refraining from posting anything in relation to university work until after semester), but I'll discuss the method in which I juggle these flaming swords. It's always relaxing to write.