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4. Waterman Centre

The Waterman Centre, built in 1984, was designed to be a functional and practical space for Creative Arts and Design. The building was named after Herbert Roy Waterman who, in 1933, was the inaugural President of the Parents & Friends Association and first Chairman of the School Board. He remained on the Board until 1950 and was also one of the first shareholders in the company officially formed in 1935 to acquire the school from the Sisters of the Church.

A prime example of 1980’s architecture, the building earned its designers, Collard Clarke and Jackson, the Canberra Medallion for Excellence in Architecture in 1985. The Canberra Times commented on the style of the building as, “Creating an environment that has the elusive feeling of order and playfulness at the same time, so essential for a building of this type.”

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A logical and and uncomplicated floorplan features studio spaces - used for the exploration of visual arts (including painting, drawing, ceramic sculpture) and graphic design - clustered around a spacious multi-use exhibition area. Upstairs, specialised spaces are used for the study of textiles and fashion design. Students’ work is displayed throughout the building, from photographs which have been developed in the centre’s darkroom to handcrafted pottery fired in the kiln which is also located in the building.

In the gardens surrounding the Waterman Centre, more examples of students’ work are evident, including a sculpture by Maryanne Nairn (1985) who returned to CGGS as an Artist-in-residence in 1998. At the rear of the building is an extra creative space in the form of a shipping container featuring a mural by past student Georgia Goodnow (2012).

The Waterman Centre is positioned on the most elevated position of the Senior School campus, enabling all major spaces in the building to take advantage of distant, virtually unimpaired views including the Brindabella ranges. 

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Concept drawing of the Waterman Centre

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The Waterman Centre under construction in 1984

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The Waterman Centre on completion in 1984

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Inside the Waterman Centre on its opening day

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Inside the Waterman Centre with student works adorning the walls

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Art exhibition inside the centre at the 2002 fete

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