Designed in Italy, Made in Australia | DESIGN Canberra 2020

Designed in Italy, Made in Australia | DESIGN Canberra 2020

Pier Luigi Nervi 1891–1979) was a structural engineer but also a revolutionary Italian master builder, architect and artist, who forged, through the invention of the Sistema Nervi – Nervi System – a new structural aesthetic for modern architecture. His pioneering system was adopted all around the world to build some of his most famous buildings: the Rome Olympic Palasports, the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption in San Francisco, the Field House at Dartmouth College in the USA, and many others.

In Australia, the Sistema Nervi was for the first time adopted with the construction of the Australia Square Tower, designed by Harry Seidler. The success of the famous circular tower led to a fruitful collaboration that lasted for more than 15 years.

The exhibition will shed light on unexpected affinities between the Italian and Australian construction industries, Roman and Milanese precedents used in modern Sydney, and an unlikely connection between an Italian factory and a revered Australian skyscraper. This exhibition will pay tribute to the two men and their shared Australian legacy, casting light on its unexpected Italian affinities and celebrating it into the future.

Curated by Paolo Stracchi (architectural technology lecturer, University of Sydney).



9-27 Nov 2020

Next occurrence: 20 Nov 2020




Disabled access available, contact operator for details


Designed in Italy, Made in Australia | DESIGN Canberra 2020

Mura Gadi Gallery, University of Canberra Library, Building 8, Australian Capital Territory, Australia