American Australian Association Murdoch Center

Woods Bagot Architects

Client: Sculptform, Bent wood wall and ceiling coverings

The American Australian Association (AAA) is a non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening ties and collaboration between Australia and the U.S. The space is designed to promote the best of the American-Australian relationship in New York City, hosting discussions, speaker series, performances, art showcases, business roundtables and networking receptions. The AAA provides opportunities for American and Australian leaders to undertake transformational study, research, professional, and artistic developments.

Woods Bagot was asked to create a flexible office space to meet the growing needs of the staff, but that could also transform into an engaging event space for the various social functions hosted by the AAA throughout the year. A 26-board room, an innovation lab, and a back-of-house office for staff complement the flexible event space that is the focal point of the space.

Providing an overlay of hospitality to an office space environment, the design includes movable furniture and fittings that do double-duty. To create volume suitable for events, the ceiling was left exposed with strategic frame-outs around the steel beams. The clean, gallery-like ceiling also becomes a backdrop for the rotating Arts Fund program. 

Australia based Sculptform provided a unique bent wood slat installation in the Welcome Area. A beautiful and curving design evokes the undulating and layered topography of the Australian outback, while creating a cocoon-like feeling of warmth. Organic and sinuous inlays within the flooring further suggest Australia‚Äôs landscape which is set against the contrasting and expansive views of midtown Manhattan via floor-to-ceiling windows.