Friday, April 10, 2015

In Memory of Iain

Our friend Iain passed away on this day three years ago - this is a re-posting of my journal entry at that time.

Our good friend, Iain Heggen passed away on the 11th of April in Geelong. Sam and I have known him since 1986 - we met during the Second Year of Architecture School in Deakin University.
He was one of the few that kept in touch after our return to Malaysia - which makes it hard to bear and harder to believe. There will be no more funny emails from Iain with photographs of Geelong.

His funeral was on the 20th of April - several of our close friends attended. Dianne who was unable to attend shared a touching story about how she first met Iain. She writes - 

"If I was to be there I would recall that I first met Iain when I responded to a notice he'd pinned up around the architecture studio. It offered free accommodation at My Buller during the week of the DU ski club trip.  The free accommodation turned out to be an igloo which we would build ourselves."

While I am glad that some of my friends were able to attend Iain's funeral. I regret not being there. I regret not telling Iain when I had a chance that in many ways he represented the Australia that Sam and I remember fondly to this day - the warm friendship, the irreverent wit and generosity.

Years after I returned to Malaysia, he would surprise me with phone calls - "because it is Easter
over here" or because it is my birthday (or his). Once I told him that I watched a televised
bike race through Geelong - he replied "Oh, I was there, did you see me waving?"

I took this photo of Iain and Wendy in our porta-cabin studio during Year 5; as an engagement present to the both of them. 

Iain Heggen; an all round good egg with long strides and a chipper outlook - as Cardie so aptly puts it. 

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Talking to students about architecture

One of my favourite past-times is talking to students about architecture; as a vocation, its practice, the crafting of spaces and so forth, and to support this hobby I tutor, have architecture interns and conduct talks and workshops.

I hold my design studio in the atrium of the college; 20 students sitting in a cluster, taking turns to talk about their ideas, showing butter-paper sketches and models. I am also a student, learning to be a better listener.
OK, some of them need to learn to be better listeners too...
 Here are some of the notes taken during last Wednesday's discussion.