Marion’s List is Parlour’s public register of women and gender-diverse people in Australian architecture and the built environment disciplines.
We need never again accept the excuse, “We asked a woman, but she wasn’t available”.
Marion’s List is named in honour of Marion Mahony Griffin (1871–1961), the trailblazing Chicago architect who made a substantial contribution to Australian architecture.
The List remembers Marion Mahony Griffin and provides a new public space for the women and gender diverse people shaping the Australian built environment today. Marion is described by scholar Alice Friedman as a ‘builder of communities and connections’, a description that also perfectly encapsulates the work of Marion’s List.
Portrait of Marion Mahony Griffin. National Library of Australia PIC/9929/2046.
Marion and her husband Walter Burley Griffin are best known for winning the 1911 international competition to design Australia’s new federal capital, known to us as Canberra. They embarked for Australia in 1914 and established an architectural practice in Melbourne and later Sydney. In Australia the Griffins pioneered experiments in domesticity, communal living, building production and native landscaping. While Marion has long been highly regarded as an architectural illustrator, twentieth-century historians struggled to describe her contributions to the Griffins’ practice and architectural thought. She was often overlooked or marginalised.
Marion faced many of the problems that continue to render women architects less visible in the public sphere; from misattribution of work, to the dominance of models of heroic, solo authorship, and the failure of many to see women as leaders.
Australian historians led the way in recovering Marion’s contribution and seeing the Griffins’ anew as collaborators. Here at Parlour we have made our own contribution too – as part of WikiD Virginia Mannering has been progressively editing many Wikipedia articles to ensure that Marion’s contribution is acknowledged and recognised.
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Acknowledgments & thanks
Marion’s List is a project by Parlour Inc. It was built by Peter Johns of Butterpaper, who put in an enormous amount of work and thinking to make it happen, in collaboration with Justine Clark. The logo is by Catherine Griffiths of Studio Catherine Griffiths and Karen Burns coined the name. Marion’s List is run by Justine Clark.