St Mark’s Church

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Coloured sunshine streamed through stained glass windows.

Coloured sunshine streamed through stained glass windows. Image: Peter Bennetts

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the broken slab, shifted walls, pleated ceiling, empty font and the pews concertinaed together

the broken slab, shifted walls, pleated ceiling, empty font and the pews concertinaed together Image: Peter Bennetts

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The empty altar.

The empty altar. Image: Peter Bennetts

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An exterior detail.

An exterior detail. Image: Peter Bennetts

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Final pictures of a postwar building.

Coloured sunshine streamed through stained glass windows and pooled on the floor, illuminating the broken slab, shifted walls, pleated ceiling, empty font and the pews concertinaed together. A modern postwar building, St Mark’s Church by Mockridge, Stahle & Mitchell was located in Sunshine in Melbourne’s west. Despite its folded roof and walls, and patterned brick and timber interiors, it was slated for demolition soon after these images were taken. A new church will be built on the site.

I’m always aware of the privilege of being an architectural photographer and being able to experience buildings as newly minted objects, often before occupants and owners have had the opportunity to inhabit them. But it’s a rare privilege to be the last person to experience a space. This church has been the symbolic site of births, deaths and marriages, now photographed in its dereliction prior to its own death. 


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