After World War II in Australia there was a period of experimentation in religious architecture in the form of houses of worship that have largely been forgotten by modern discourse.

Post-war Australia exhibited an explosion of growth that touched all aspects of society. Art and architecture moved from a restrained period to a more experimental. This period of unrestrained design and building impacted most major faiths, demographics, and regions of Australia.

A symposium by Lisa Marie Daunt and Philip Goad entitled “Constructing Religious Territories: Community, Identity and Agency in Australia’s Modern Religious Architecture” in 2018 provided ample discussion of this period.

Several notable examples were identified in fourteen papers submitted to this symposium. From these papers, five case studies are drawn which represent the thousands of built projects from this period. Many of these culturally significant buildings are in danger of disrepair.

Key Takeaways:

  • Michael Dunphy was an Australian architect in the 1950s who advocated passionately in favor of modern, professional, high-quality design and construction of churches.
  • After WWII, there was a sharp spike in Australia’s population which prompted the construction of many new places of worship.
  • One exemplar of post-WWII church design is the Marayong Memorial Chapel for Polish War Dead, designed by Michael Dysart and located in Blacktown, NSW.

“the postwar period heralded a period of experimentation in the urban agency of religious buildings and raised questions about religion’s symbolic place in modern society”

IQ Construction specialises in building and remodelling religious buildings in and around Perth.

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