Marty Bignell

B.BEnv (Arch) B.ARCH Graduate of Architecture, Launceston Studio

Marty sees architecture as a blunt instrument; as alchemy. We grapple to shape the lyrical out of crude matter, whether wood, steel, concrete or clay.

A practicing architect in Brisbane and the Gold Coast for over 20 years, Marty has also taught architecture for the past decade. At his most recent position at the University of Tasmania, he focussed his research into prefabricated structural systems. 

Marty’s approach favours less colour neutrality, more carbon neutrality. Currently, he feels architecture is only engaged in a tiny fraction of the growth and change happening around us, and is the poorer for it. In Marty’s eyes, there’s limitless potential for our industry to shape our built environment more positively.

When Marty thinks through a project, his amalgamation of references stretch both inside and outside of the architectural canon. Visiting the fringe of the Fukushima exclusion zone following the 2011 tsunami heavily impacted his practice. The power of the devastated landscape and the resilience of the displaced communities left an indelible impression. 

After hours, Marty might be found wandering around a national park or sneakily snapping photos of dilapidated sheds. It’s all the better if he can combine the two. 

A recent brief asking for no doors had Marty in designer heaven. He believes architecture is at its best when it responds to demands. The more idiosyncratic, the better the challenge.