1961 - Building Commenced on the Site

30 buildings on the site demolished to make way for the tower building, plaza building, public plaza, retail complex and carpark.
 
“The idea that a building could be circular had never entered my consciousness. Dad and I must have circled that entrance lobby half a dozen times, just delighting in the playfulness of it.”
 
Mark Wakely, Architecture Writer

1967 - Australia Square Completed

On its completion, Australia Square became Sydney’s first skyscraper and the world’s tallest lightweight concrete building. It established new principles in design and construction, breaking records and setting a new benchmark in office tower construction. The structural system, developed by of the world’s leading engineers, Pier Luigi Nervi, featured technological advances at the time.

“Australia Square gave Sydney a sense of growing up, a sense of confidence. It was really our first glittering version of a skyscraper.”

Elizabeth Farelly, Architecture Critic

1968 - Art Meets Architecture

Harry Seidler commissioned a sculpture for Australia Square by renowned American sculptor, Alexander Calder. Crossed Blades has become a striking established feature of the building’s plaza area described by Seidler as an “open but contained space” like the town square in a medieval city. The plaza continues to be widely recognised as a precursor to the concept of civic space on private land.

1968, 1975, 1996 - Harry Seidler Awards

Seidler was committed to making a better physical world, in which architecture is an art form as well as modern, socially aware and ecologically sound. For more than 50 years, Seidler’s distinctive, bold architectural style extended to houses, apartments, offices and public buildings in Australia and internationally, and he received awards and honours throughout every decade of his career.
 
1968
RAIA Sir John Sulman Medal for a building of outstanding merit.
RAIA Civic Design Award for a work of outstanding environmental design.
 
1976
The Royal Australian Institute of Architects (RAIA) Gold Medal.
 
1996
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Gold Medal.

2003 - A New Mural for the Lobby

A mural by celebrated New York artist Sol LeWitt was commissioned in 2003 by Harry Seidler to showcase international works of art at Australia Square. The mural replaced the lobby’s original tapestries by Le Corbusier and Vasarely. Penelope Seidler said her husband originally planned a mural on the walls of the circular ‘drum’ housing the tower building's services but could not find a suitable one, so settled on the tapestries.

2016 & Beyond - The Height of Achievement

More than a building, Australia Square is a symbol of groundbreaking innovation that continues to inspire Sydneysiders into the 21st century. In 1967, it was dubbed by the press as “a triumph”, “beauty in concrete for Sydney” and “a work of art without equal in Australia”, descriptions that still fit perfectly today.

The extraordinary legacy of Australia’s most influential architect endures, evident in the popularity of the 2014 Museum of Sydney exhibition, Harry Seidler: Painting Toward Architecture. The exhibition revealed artworks from the Seidler family collection and featured works by some of the greatest names in modern art and architecture with whom Seidler collaborated, including Walter Gropius, Marcel Breuer, Oscar Niemeyer, Max Dupain, Josef Albers, Frank Stella, Piere Luigi Nervi, Alexander Calder, Sol LeWitt and Lin Utzon.