Thomas Dixon Centre

Conrad Gargett

The Thomas Dixon Centre is an adaptive reuse project of the state listed former boot-making factory and commercial air raid shelters where much of the original heritage fabric has been retained.

The State heritage listed and State-owned Thomas Dixon Centre has been revitalised as a centre of wellness, art and performance for the State of Queensland, Queensland Ballet and Brisbane. Conrad Gargett worked closely with the State of Queensland, represented by the Department of Energy and Public Works (the Project deliverer and owner, asset owner, and project funder) and the Queensland Ballet to enrich the historic Thomas Dixon Centre, enabling Queensland Ballet to expand further and shine on the global stage.

The redevelopment enriches people’s lives through ballet, deepening connections with the company’s current audience and inspiring future generations of dancers, artists, technicians, dance/ sports medicine specialists and more, with a new level of accessibility to all aspects of performances. The Ballet is a culmination of artists; dancers, choreographers, stage writers, composers and musicians, as well as wardrobe and costume designers, production designers, teachers and educators, and the enablers.

The aspiration is to go beyond the core business and art forms to build connections with traditional and digital artists, sculptors and installation artists, and to increase connections with the community through dance classes, education and providing support to other performance groups.

The emerging themes of the project were identity, lightness, wellness, excellence, sustainability and passion. The concept had a strong connection with Queensland and used uniquely Queensland materials. The application was focused on four drivers: natural materials, vertical lines and colour blocking to vertical planes, texture and movement to horizontal planes and the new materials speaking with the existing. The materials were carefully and considerately selected to be aligned with WELL certification. Each material was thought through thoroughly and letters of assurance for compliance signed by the suppliers / manufacturers.

Photography by Christopher Frederick Jones

Furniture: Dexion, Hadley, Jardan, Planex, Schiavello, Stylecraft. Lighting: Design Nation, Satelight. Finishes: Baux, Brickworks, Colorbond, Covet, Décor Systems, Dulux, Easycraft, Fibonacci, Forbo, G James, Harlequin Floors, Kvadrat, Laminex, Maharam, Murobond, Nover, Okalux, Pelle, Permax, Porta Timbers, QLD Timber Flooring, Supawood, Vertilux, Viridian. Fittings & Fixtures: Auhaus, Britex, Brodware, CHS Healthcare, Enware, GWA Group, Hafele, JD MacDonald, Phoenix Tapware, RBA Group, Reece, Zip Industries, Madinoz (Dorma Kaba).