A competition entry for the Broken Hill Art Exchange, Sun Portals proposes a viewing platform and 'Museum of Sunlight' at the site of the Broken Hill solar farm - one of the largest of its kind in the world. Celebrating the move from traditional mining and fossil fuels to high technology and renewable energy sources, the scheme uses a vernacular Australian language of rammed earth walls and corrugated iron to draw out the inextricable connection of earth and sun in this remote desert landscape.
A ramp winds upwards through seven chambers, bringing visitors slowly towards an elevated platform overlooking the expansive solar farm. Along the way, visitors are taken on a 'tour' of sunlight, with each chamber offering a different angle on the sun's rays, from full exposure and partial shading to diffuse light and dancing reflections.
Informative panels provide context on the solar farm and solar power in general. The internal and external spaces created by the offset chambers present opportunities for local artists and sculptors to exhibit work.
Broken Hill Art Exchange (competition entry)
Broken Hill, NSW
Architectural design - Stirling Blacket