As ICON looks to its future, the company’s growth is set to be driven by building on its 20-year track record for creating bespoke, high quality projects in both the residential and commercial sectors spanning the eastern seaboard and the ACT.
One key facet of ICON’s past, present and future success is collaboration – a value that has seen the company deliver more than 40 projects throughout its 20-year history, strategically assembling the best-in-class creative and commercial partners for each one.
The company’s projects are successfully brought to life, in many ways, because of this approach, ensuring the construction, architecture, landscaping and the incorporation of bespoke design features, all work together to create the best possible end product.
Director of ICON, Ashley Murdoch shares his insights on the company’s approach to collaboration – and why bringing the best talent together is driving its success.
Why is collaboration one of ICON’s core values?
I like the idea of working with other people, whether it be other developers, creative partners or whoever has a role to play within the development of a property. It is exciting to work with new and different people – each partner comes with a different skill set or greater strength in varying areas. I believe there is a great benefit to have the experience of working with the varied and talented people and firms.
What do you look for when selecting your creative partners for each project?
We look for partners that are not followers – ones that have a clear identity as to what they are visualising as the end product. For example, we look to work with designers that strive to do something different and interesting, and that demonstrate a clever use of space and a practicality as to how people really live. We want people to be able to enjoy both inside and outside space and place value on the landscape of a project and the ongoing maintenance of this as it contributes to the overall development.
We create properties that stand the test of time, so we look for designers who are timeless, elegant and simple. It is this style of projects that are, in fact, the most complicated. The simpler the detailing, the more complex the delivery is.
We also work with people who are fun, and passionate about that they do; people who enjoy a challenge, love their work and want to create something better both from the aesthetic and practical use point of view.
What makes a collaboration or partnership a success?
I believe working in strong groups leads to an overall better outcome. Each of the contributing partners is pushed by the team environment to reach a higher standard and to strive that much harder to challenge themselves and their partners to reach that pinnacle. Plus, it leaves more people to celebrate the success with at the end the project.
Which recent projects stand out as examples of ICON’s collaboration in action?
Each of our projects stand out for different reasons. There are elements in each of our project’s designs that the I feel add value to each of the individual buildings. Powell & Glenn’s design of George and Powlett in East Melbourne, for example, was so elegant and simple – the perfect addition to the area. We also commissioned bespoke lighting features to add another element of artistry to the property.
At Farm Cutter Swan in Richmond, we also incorporated a beautiful open-air atrium, while at Otter Street, the glazed brick façade will add a new, considered landmark to the area. These unique features are all examples of the value of collaboration brings to our work, and how at ICON, two (or more) minds at work are better than one.