The focus of the Library's architectural collection is the built environment in Australia, with specific emphasis on New South Wales. It ranges from the vernacular dwellings of Indigenous Australians and the first European buildings recorded by white observers and explorers, to early practitioners of the nineteenth century, and internationally recognised architects of the twentieth century.
The Library aims to document the built environment, identifying the range of building styles and building methods shaping the heritage and culture of people in metropolitan, rural, regional and urban environments in Australia, particularly in New South Wales.
The Library collects a selective representation of architectural drawings and related materials associated with individual architects and architectural firms to provide information for reference and research purposes about the design of buildings and other structures as well as the work of the particular architect or firm. Materials include conceptual drawings, plans, presentation drawings and associated specifications and records.
Although in the past complete archives of architectural practices have been collected, current policy is to collect more selectively and concentrate on presentation and design drawings.
Architectural plan and drawing collections are supported by oral histories, photographs of buildings and streetscapes, site plans/maps and topographical paintings and drawings as well as books, journals and ephemera relating to Australian, specifically New South Wales, architecture and its European context.
- Information about individual architects, architectural styles and critiques, bibliographies and reference works
- Australian architectural and building journals and construction handbooks dating from the seventeenth century
- Architectural plans and drawings from the early 1920s including conceptual drawings, design and presentation drawings, contract drawings, working and detail drawings representing the work of New South Wales architects, architectural firms and town planners
- Records of architectural practices including reports, specifications, correspondence and client files
- Maps and site plans
- Architectural photography and photographs of streetscapes
- Topographical paintings and drawings, especially for nineteenth century images
- Sound recordings of interviews with architects
- Australian architectural indexing and abstracting databases such as ARCH and Australian Heritage Bibliography
- Pamphlets of the building construction industry, companies and products
- Electronic resources such as the Australian Heritage Commission's Register of the National Estate Database and facilitated access to other relevant online resources via bookmarks linked to the Library's Electronic Resources webpage
- John Verge architectural plans and papers (1820-1891)
Mitchell Library: PXD 188; PXD 325; VIA/ELI B/5
Mitchell Library: A3045
- Edmund Thomas Blacket & Sons (1854-1933) architectural plans, specifications, correspondence, papers and drawing box
- Joern Utzon, Sydney Opera House collection, 1956-1967, comprising office files, architectural drawings, architectural reports, wooden models, photographic prints and negatives
Mitchell Library: PXD 492 (Microfilms CY 3714 - CY 3718 and viewing copies available)
Mitchell Library: PXD 644 volumes 1-8
Mitchell Library: PXA 590 volumes 1-18
Mitchell Library: ON 122
- Architectural models.
Mitchell Library: LR 62, LR 73, LR 74, LR 76.
Mitchell Library: MLMSS 2362
- Harry Seidler, papers, records and collection of architectural drawings, 1948-1987
- Glenn Murcutt collection of architectural drawings and associated records comprising 247 projects, chiefly residential, including public buildings and commercial premises (1962-1995)
- Holtermann collection of glass negatives (1871-1876). Vernacular architecture of rural New South Wales especially the goldfields towns of Hill End, Gulgong and Carcoar and the emerging regional centres of Bathurst, Orange and Dubbo.
- Maps and plans:
- H. Percy Dove, A new and complete wharf, street and building plan directory of the city of Sydney, 1880.
- New South Wales Department of Lands, Sydney Metropolitan Detail Series, 1883-.
- Fire Underwriters Association of New South Wales, Block Plan of the City of Sydney, 1940.