Faculty of Engineering and Built EnvironmentFaculty of Engineering and Built Environment

Professors of Practice

The University of Newcastle is home to some of the best design minds in the country, with six AIA gold-medal winning architects committed to passing their knowledge on to the next generation.

This team of leading architects makes up the School of Architecture and Built Environment’s Professors of Practice. Rather than having one professor, the role was split into six fractional positions so students could benefit from each of the architect’s individual strengths.

These internationally renowned architects are behind prestigious works including the Sydney Opera House, Olympic villages in Sydney, Athens, Beijing and London, the Brisbane Gallery of Modern Art, and extraordinary university buildings, woolsheds, apartments, and houses.

The Professors of Practice are fully involved in all levels of teaching and host specialist mentoring sessions. Regular one-on-one time with students has inspired students to think outside of the box and has fostered a sense of community within the faculty. By implementing this innovative approach, it has encouraged collaboration in future professional practice.

“Mentoring is a much stronger way of passing on information. It’s one thing having a gold medal, it’s another to be generous in passing on that knowledge. I think all the fractional professors here are extraordinarily generous in passing on their knowledge,” said Professor Peter Stutchbury.

Our Professors of Practice

Brit AndresenBrit Andresen

AIA Gold Medalist (2002)

Andresen’s dedication to bridging the gap between architectural education and practice caused her to be the first female recipient of the AIA Gold Medal. Andresen studied architecture at Trondheim University Norway qualifying as Sivil Arkitekt in 1969.

She has taught architecture at the University of Cambridge, England, the Architectural Association, London, the School of Architecture and Urban Planning UCLA, and the University of Queensland.

Andresen established Andresen O’Gorman Architects in 1980 with her partner in life and work, Peter O’Gorman. The practice works across residential with a penchant for timber. Notable projects include Mooloomba House on North Stradbroke Island, Ocean View Farmhouse and Rosebery House.

Kerry and Lindsay ClareKerry and Lindsay Clare

AIA Gold Medalists (1999)

Husband and wife team Kerry and Lindsay Clare have a distinguished body of work that includes the Brisbane Gallery of Modern Art, Wesley House, Brisbane, UNSW Student Housing and the University of the Sunshine Coast Chancellery.

The Clare’s produce buildings that are beautiful, climatically responsive, low impact, and environmentally sensitive. However, central to the Clares' approach, is the Modernist idea that the design of each building must proceed anew from a rational analysis of functional, technical, structural and social criteria.

This research is not just a matter of balancing competing criteria but is driven by a central intention to incorporate climatically responsive, low-impact environmental control systems.

Given contemporary awareness of climate change, this same environmental impulse propels many other architects. Yet an historical perspective shows that the Clares innovated this position throughout their public and private commissions well before this trend.

Richard LeplastrierRichard Leplastrier

AIA Gold Medalist (1999)

Richard Leplastrier has worked on some of Australia’s most iconic buildings, including the Sydney Opera House with John Utzon. In 2015, he was awarded a RIBA International Fellowship by the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Leplastrier was made an Officer of the Order of Australia, in the 2011 Queen's Birthday Honours, "for distinguished service to architecture, particularly through the application of environmentally sensitive design, and as an educator and mentor".

Leplastrier's enduring design research contribution explores minimal architectural intrusion into complex Australian ecologies, drawing inspiration from Australia's unique environments. Over 45 years of practice, he has focused his research on the essentials of living, the origins of human settlement, and archetypal patterns of human behaviour.

Professor Lawrence NieldLawrence Nield

AIA Gold Medalist (2012)

Nield was awarded the Gold Medal on the basis of his prolific contribution to architecture, urban design, academic teaching and significant publications.

His body of work includes commissions in eight countries, involvement in the planning of three Olympics, the design of a number of Olympic buildings, the redevelopment of the Circular Quay Passenger Terminal and a significant contribution to the design of hospitals and health buildings.

Nield's work on urban design is prolific and well-recognised. He has a special interest in public buildings and has been involved in the architecture of four Olympic Games. Nield was head of master planning for the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games – and designed the extraordinary Beijing Tennis Centre for the 2008 Olympic Games.

Peter StutchburyPeter Stutchbury

AIA Gold Medalist (2015)

UON alumnus Peter Stutchbury is renowned for his innovative approach to sustainability and design. In recognition of this, his firm has won an unprecedented 41 AIA awards.

His work includes the University of Newcastle's Design Faculty (in association with EJE Architects) and the Birabahn Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Centre, in association with fellow Professor of Practice, Richard Leplastrier.

In 2016 Stutchbury was also awarded the 2016 International Fellowship to the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), based on his skills as an architect, draftsman and his consummate influence as a mentor.