ST PETER'S, HALIFAX
ST PATRICK'S, INGHAM
THE VICTORIA HOTEL
Ferrier Baudet Architects was established by Ian Ferrier in 1957.
Ian Ferrier came to Australia after graduating from the acclaimed School of Architecture and Engineering at McGill University in Canada, which was highly regarded for its competitive program that included training in advanced engineering and art as well as architecture and design.
The McGill Architecture School at the time was heavily influenced by the Modern Movement. Two key influences were the Bauhaus architects and Frank Lloyd Wright. Ian’s design philosophy was very much about honest expression of structure and response to climate.
Ian worked for Stephenson and Turner in Sydney as their hospital design work was of interest to him.
During a holiday in Brisbane he met Jack Donohue of Donohue Edwards Architects who invited him to work in their Brisbane Office. It was while Ian worked there, that he designed the Darwin Cathedral.
In 1957 he met Rupert Lee who wanted to build a hotel in Ingham and at the same time, he met the Holy Spirit Sisters who were planning an aged care project. These rather significant commissions led him to establish his own practice.
The successful completion of these projects led to more work in Ingham and Townsville, where he designed churches and schools and other commercial buildings. He was interested in church architecture and was surprised that the churches being built in tropical Queensland were traditional in design. His churches, like his other buildings, had openable walls (doors or windows) down each side to allow for cross ventilation, the only cooling device available. His award winning Halifax Church was the first to respond to climate with completely openable walls on both sides. Such flexible, climate oriented design adaptations were highly innovative at the time. The church remains unchanged today and is as beautiful as ever.
Over the next few decades he designed two more cathedrals, one in Cairns and one in Port Moresby, and more than 20 churches and chapels. In all of these buildings he commissioned artists to complement the work, incorporating sculptures, metalwork, stained glass windows (many of which he designed himself) and mosaics. He designed everything including the furniture, pews, altar, ambo, tabernacle, celebrant’s chair, Stations of the Cross and holy water fonts.
In 1986 he was commissioned as architect for the Papal Mass at QE11 Stadium. This was a prestigious commission which he took on with enthusiasm and it resulted in the construction of a podium sanctuary, altar, ambo and celebrant’s chair. He also designed a series of flags and other temporary structural elements to create an outdoor church.
Ian Ferrier designed many schools around Queensland and has worked on nearly all the major catholic schools in Brisbane at some time in his career. Other works include houses, banks and commercial buildings.
Notable projects around Brisbane include the Holy Spirit Hospital, The Pharmacy Guild Building in Leichardt St, Prince of Peace Church at Everton Hills, Church and Monastery at Carina and the Pine Rivers Shire Council Buildings and Library. The Catholic Church at Auchenflower is the first example of a post Vatican 11 layout, where the intention was to allow people to sit closer to the altar and priest. The result was a fan shaped floor plan, and very interesting geometry for the roof shape was generated.
His interest in Heraldry and his association with many bishops led to him design Coats of Arms for the clergy throughout Australia. He considered this work a labour of love and after undertaking detailed research, he designed and executed the production (hand drawn and coloured) of these Coats of Arms, often using gold leaf in the finishing stages. This work was all voluntary and he considered it his gift to the community.
In the later years of his practice he undertook legal work and arbitration.
He was joined in practice by his daughter Catherine and son in law Roland in 1979 and together they have managed over 1200 building projects.