Fostering Dialogues: Why Cult Is INDE.Awards’ Partner For The Building Category

  •   18 July 2019

Leading furniture purveyor Cult has been the proud partner of INDE.Awards The Building category to foster broader dialogues in design, and to witness the growth of the regional architecture community.




“The only thing that is constant is change.” So said the great Greek philosopher Heraclitus. Change is the catalyst for progress. The INDE.Awards programme was founded in 2017 to champion the Indo Pacific’s most progressive buildings, spaces, objects, proposals and people and celebrate those who break barriers and do great things.

And this celebration has been made possible thanks to a host of exceptional industry partners with an equally progressive mindset. One of them is Cult.

Cult has stayed ahead of the pack for over 22 years thanks to the combination of a keen eye for design, unparalleled customer service, and always, a positive and broader outlook on the future. It keeps its fingers on the pulse of the creative industry, in Australia and the region.

Beyond providing the best furniture the world of design can offer, Cult has been contributing to the enrichment of the Australian design culture through a slew of initiatives, including events, sponsorships and NAU, an original furniture label that promotes local designers




Cult has been the proud partner of INDE.Awards The Building category since the award programme’s inaugural edition in 2017.





Why would a furniture brand sponsor an award category for architectural projects?

“Everything is changing,” says Cult founder Richard Munao, elaborating that we don’t really have isolated problems anymore in this world because everything is connected to something else – this is true in the fields of the furniture and interior design. “It was critical for us to show our support for the architecture community as well, given the level of dialogue that’s been happening between interior designers and architects,” he shares.   

A barometer of progressive buildings in the Indo Pacific Region, The Building category honours projects that broaden architecture’s capacity to respond to place and culture, and mark a new direction in the future of architecture.

“It aligns with Cult’s vision; we try not to stand still, to always push beyond the limits of what we can do and it’s incredible to see new architectural projects done differently and pushing the existing boundaries,” says Munao.


Maitland River Link by CHROFI with McGregor Coxall. Photo by Brett Boardman


This year the Building award went to The Maitland River Link by CHROFI with McGregor Coxall, a revitalisation project that serves a public living room that reactivates a previously unused part of the Maitland town and reconnects people with the river.


Freycinet Lodge Coastal Pavilions by Liminal Architecture. Photo by Dianna Snape 


The Honourable Mention went to The Freycinet Lodge Coastal Pavilions by Liminal Architecture, a collection of nine pavilions in Tasmania that artfully curve and bend to respect its national park context. 

“The 12 shortlisted projects for The Building are significantly diverse. Each of them speaks in a distinct design language, but all of them create a universal value for the people who use the space, and for its respective environments,” comments Munao.


The Brick Cave by H&P Architects. Photo by Nguyen Tien Thanh


The Bellbird Retreat by Steendijk in Queensland and the Brick House by H&P Architects in Hanoi, for example, use different design strategies – the former was built using a kit of parts that minimise onsite fabrication while the latter was constructed using readily available, locally made bricks – to provide a seamless indoor-outdoor transition for the dwellers. 


The Bellbird Retreat by Steendijk. Photo by Christopher Frederick Jones


“What we’ve seen here from these nominated entries, is that there is a far more open architectural language in our region than what’s currently being done. It’s great to see the growth of regional design identity that combines the local wisdom and international perspective,” says Munao of what the world needs to see more from the Indo Pacific’s architectural industry. “I hope that it continues to grow and flourish.”




“There is a far more open architectural language in our region…”

Richard Munao




On Cult’s hope for the awards program and the architecture industry in the region, Munao shares: “There are more and more people from our side who want to see more of the projects that are a little bit different than the traditional spec buildings. I hope the INDE.Awards program continues to grow awareness by showcasing the full potential of a space in this region.”



Top image: Richard Munao (left) and Brad Swartz (right), accepting the award on behalf of CHROFI, on stage at the INDE.Awards 2019 Gala in Melbourne. Photo by Einwick.