Terroir: cosmopolitan ground

Terroir is one of the more interesting young architectural firms in Australia, notable for the explorative way in which its practitioners work as much as the buildings that are produced through this modality. Terroir: Cosmopolitan Ground, published by the Faculty of Design, Architecture and Building, provides delicious photographs and clear architectural drawings for the delectation of those who enjoy good design. Yet it also invites us backstage and into the minds of the directors, Richard Blythe, Gerard Reinmuth and Scott Balmforth. It does so through an open-ended text comprised primarily of intense conversations between the Terroir architects and a number of interlocuters – philosophers Marcelo Stamm, Andrew Benjamin and Jeff Malpas and architects Kerstin Thompson and Rachel Neeson. In the interweaving of debate and buildings, the book departs from other monographs that typically present architecture as the product of a singular vision, instead giving evidence of architectural research as a multi-strand activity of creative inquiry encompassing questions of place and cultural production, programmatic organisation and representation, material and imaging technologies and the nature of collaboration. The award-winning practice has been significantly engaged in architectural education and research, with Gerard Reinmuth an Adjunct Professor and sessional design tutor in the School of Architecture. The book is available from www.dab.uts.edu.au/research/publications/index.html