In the period before European settlement of Australia in 1788, evidence of permanent structures built by Indigenous Australians in Australia was limited as the Indigenous population did not build establishments that were commonly recognised by the European Settlers. As a British colony, the first European buildings were derivative of the European fashions of the time. Tents and wattle and daub huts preceded more substantial structures. Georgian architecture is seen in early government buildings and the homes of the wealthy.

With the Australian gold rushes of the mid-19th-century major buildings, largely in Melbourne and Sydney and to a lesser extent in regional capitals such as Ballarat and Bendigo were built in the style of Victorian architecture, and the rest of Australia followed. One of the most significant architectural movements in Australian architecture was the Federation architecture style of the turn of the 20th century, where Australia began to play with the idea of a “style of our own”, and the modern styles of the late 20th century which sought to reject historicism.

The Architects

During the 19th century, Australian architects were inspired by developments in England. From the 1930s on, North American and International influences started to appear. In Tasmania there were four leading architects whose impact on the landscape remains stong and powerful today.

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