Alexander (Alec) Tzannes is an Australian architect. Tzannes has worked and studied in Australia and abroad in a career spanning more than 30 years. He is the founder of the high-profile, multi-award winning architectural practice Tzannes Associates, established in Sydney in 1982.
In October 2008 Tzannes was appointed Professor and Dean of the Faculty of the Built Environment at the University of New South Wales. He combines a fractional appointment at the University with continuing practice at Tzannes Associates, where he is directing the design of projects in Sydney that include the Brewery at Broadway, two mixed used buildings in the city of Newcastle and several substantial residential commissions.
Tzannes is a graduate of architecture and urban design from Sydney University and Columbia University (Master of Science in Architecture & Urban Design) who began his career in the New South Wales Government Architects Office. He worked with Andrew Andersons at Special Projects and in association with Glenn Murcutt before starting his own practice.
Tzannes Associates is known for its involvement in architectural projects that present particularly challenging or complex criteria - from major urban developments such as the Carlton United Brewery master plan at Sydney's Broadway to significant residential projects.
Tzannes and his practice have been honoured with more than 40 major national and state awards, including being twice awarded with Australia's highest accolade for new residential work, the Robin Boyd Award, presented by the Royal Australian Institute of Architects for:
• Henwood House (1988), Paddington, New South Wales
• House at Northbridge (Snelling House) (1997), Northbridge, New South Wales
In 1997 the House at Northbridge (Snelling House) was also awarded New South Wales' highest residential architecture award, the NSW Wilkinson Award for Residential Buildings.
Other awards include:
• The 1998 Blacket Prize for Regional Architecture (presented by the NSW Chapter of the Australian Institute of Architects) for Killcare Residence
• Numerous awards for public buildings, interior architecture and conservation.
Alec Tzannes designed the Federation Pavilion in Centennial Park, New South Wales, which was erected around the Commonwealth Stone as a permanent monument to Australia's Federation, in the Bicentennial Year of European Settlement in 1988. The Federation Monument which consists of the Commonwealth Stone (1901) and the Federation Pavilion (1988) is significant as the site of the official ceremony to mark the Federation of Australia and the inauguration of the Commonwealth of Australia on 1 January 1901.
Tzannes has maintained an active public life during his career, being a member of numerous boards and committees including design review panels for Sydney Olympic Park, Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust, Heritage Council of NSW and the Transport Infrastructure Development Corporation. He is a Member of the Historic Houses Trust and of the NSW Public Library Architecture Foundation.
In 2007 Tzannes held the office of National President, Australian Institute of Architects. (In July 2008 the 'Royal' was dropped from the Institute's name.)
He has published widely and lectures regularly around Australia. The NSW Public Library holds many original drawings and sketchbooks of his work. A book introducing the work of Tzannes Associates is in development.