The Building

“The interior gallery spaces adapt so completely that the gallery does not seem to be the same place from one show to the next. On opening nights the foyer is a crush of people eager to see what has been brought to light.” Prof. Leon van Schaik.  

Derek Swalwell

ACCA’s building, completed in 2002, and designed by local architects Wood Marsh, has become one of Melbourne’s best loved architectural icons. The distinctive rusty steel façade contrasts with the shiny, inter-pressed metal and glass surface of the foyer’s interior, creating a space designed to provide an exciting contemporary art experience.

Based on the European model of the Kunsthalle or ‘exhibition hall’, ACCA in its simplest form, is a large shell for the display of contemporary art. ACCA has four gallery spaces of varying sizes, which open out from the distinctive foyer space.

In the words of architects Roger Wood and Randal Marsh:
“The building is designed to make reference to its function…a sculpture in which to show art. It was also designed to support art practice in an optimistic way…and to be a robust laboratory for experimentation. Openings in the external fabric are kept to a minimum and the vocabulary of steel frame and taut metal skin references past occupation of the site, namely warehouses, foundries and sheds.”