Kengo Kuma completes first building in Australia

Ribbons of wood wrap around The Exchange by Kengo Kuma, which has opened in Darling Square, Sydney, Australia.


The photos captured by Martin Mischkulnig reveal the spiralling form of the six-storey civic centre, which is Japanese architect Kuma's first building in Australia.

Now open to the public, the building is wrapped in 20,000 metres of light-coloured wood that Kuma has arranged in "a dynamic and exciting manner" to offer passersby glimpses of activity inside.


"Our aim is to achieve architecture that is as open and tangible as possible to the community, and this is reflected in the circular geometry that creates a building that is accessible and recognisable from multiple directions," said Kuma.

"The wooden screen wraps the exterior of the building in a dynamic and exciting manner, a historical reference to Darling Harbour originally being a hive of business activity and a focal point as a market exchange."


The characterful form of The Exchange is created by the staggering of its six curved floorplates, enveloped by angled walkways.

Though the photos do not reveal the interior of the building, it contains a library, childcare centre, market hall and a "makerspace" to support creative and technology start-ups. There is also a rooftop bar and restaurant with views over Tumbalong Park, the Chinese Gardens and Cockle Bay.