From: Australia ICOMOS Secretariat []
Sent: Friday, 29 June 2007 3:16 PM
To: Recipient list suppressed:
Subject: E-Mail News No. 288 Special edition
Sydney Opera House Inscribed


Yesterday afternoon, the meeting of UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee in Christchurch New Zealand agreed to inscribe the Sydney Opera House on the World Heritage List.

The expert nomination report which went forward to the committee stated: ”….it stands by itself as one of the indisputable masterpieces of human creativity, not only in the 20th century but in the history of humankind.”

In a press release issued by the Sydney Opera House, the Chair of the Sydney Opera House Trust, Kim Williams said.

“We are indebted to the fearless vision of the man behind its genesis, former Premier Joe Cahill and the selection committee for the design competition which dared to embrace its unique design.

“Above all, we are indebted to architect Jørn Utzon and the architects, engineers, builders and craftsmen who were inspired by his designs and vision for a great building – a building which drew references from ancient and modern traditions but was so different to anything ever built before.

“They went with Utzon to the edge of the possible, making ground-breaking innovations in engineering and technology.

“We are blessed that Utzon is still the architect for Sydney Opera House, making functional and aesthetic improvements in keeping with his Design Principles and the Conservation Management Plan.

“We are in awe of his genius, generous spirit and deep affection for the building and the people of Sydney.”

It is 50 years since Utzon was announced as the competition winner (January 1957) and 33 years since Sydney Opera House was officially opened (October 1973). It is the youngest cultural site to ever be included on the World Heritage List.

Although Australia now has 17 places inscribed on the World Heritage List, this is only the second Australian building to be listed, the first being the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton Gardens, Melbourne in 2004.

Thanks and congratulations must be extended to all those involved in preparing the nomination, many of them ICOMOS members. It has included a collaborative effort between both State and Federal governments and Sydney Opera House management with assistance from many outside of these organisations.

The following press releases from the federal Minister for Environment and Water Resources (jointly with the NSW Minister for Planning), and from the Sydney Opera House itself provide further information:

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Australia ICOMOS Secretariat
Nola Miles, Secretariat Officer
Cultural Heritage Centre for Asia and the Pacific
Deakin University
221 Burwood Highway
Burwood Victoria 3125
Telephone: (03) 9251 7131
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