New Exhibition – Butterfield’s Vision

As part of Open House Melbourne (Sat 30 – Sun 31 July), the Cathedral will display an exhibition of large-scale reproductions of architect William Butterfield’s original drawings.

Dating from 1878 to 1884, more than 150 drawings are part of the fabric of Melbourne’s story and tell the fascinating history of a building that forever changed the city’s landscape.

The exhibition will give visitors an opportunity to see close up some of the plans that were drawn and dispatched by Butterfield from England, who designed the Cathedral without ever having set foot in Melbourne, and to see how his vision came to fruition.  

Image courtesy of the State Library of Victoria.

Many of the drawings contain detailed and intricate notes handwritten by Butterfield, that guided the work of local builders.

The State Library Victoria currently has these architectural plans in their collection, however they are in very poor condition being close to 150 years old and in a perilously fragile state. Conservation work is currently underway to ensure the story of this architectural landmark lives on in the State Collection. You can read more about this project here.

The exhibition will be open from this Saturday, 30th July, and remain in the Cathedral Transept Gallery throughout August.