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Woods Bagot designs Bendigo museum expansion

Aug 5, 2011
  • Article by Online Editor

Woods Bagot’s design for a new extension to Bendigo’s Chinese museum, the Golden Dragon Museum, has been unveiled to coincide with the museum’s 20th anniversary celebrations.

The extension “oozes modern flair, yet reflects authentic links to Chinese cultural philosophy,” according to the design statement. It will be clad in a metallic skin, with a subtle pattern that references the designs of the Chinese Wheel of Life.

The extension will provide new space for the museum, touring exhibitions, a restaurant, gift shop, function space and internal courtyard gardens, and will build on the museum’s position as a hub for Chinese cultural activity.

Woods Bagot Design Leader, Bruno Mendes, said that, in a gesture informed by traditional feng-shui practice, the building would rise to three storeys to the south to draw positive energies from the Bendigo Botanic Gardens.

The Golden Dragon Museum opened in 1991, providing a permanent home for a large collection of Chinese artifacts. The regional city of Bendigo is one of Victoria’s gold rush boomtowns, and is also an historic settlement area for the Chinese.

Woods Bagot Principal Harry Charalambous, who lead the design of the museum masterplan in the early 1990s, said: “It’s wonderful to see the museum and its design continue to evolve. What’s remained current in the design philosophy over two decades is the Bendigo Chinese Association’s commitment to incorporate total authenticity to enable a link to their ancestral cultural heritage with their local history of settlement in Bendigo.”

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