Genevieve Lilley, graduated from the University of Sydney in 1991 with the University Medal and left Australia soon after under the auspices of the two-year Marten Bequest. She lived briefly in Spain and Italy before settling in the UK, where she worked for 8 years with renowned British architect, Sir David Chipperfield, on a variety of public, private and retail commissions. In her time there, she worked on numerous civic projects, including projects in the UK (including the Natural History Museum, and the River & Rowing Museum at Henley on Thames), in Italy (Dolce e Gabbana shops worldwide), and in Germany (the Neues Museum competition in Berlin and the Grassimuseum in Leipzig). Genevieve established her own practice in London in 1999, in Sydney in 2005, and added a Hobart office in 2014.

Her practice specialises in a range of small to medium scale projects, generally characterised by their quirkiness, and usually involving the adaptive re-use of existing buildings (both historic and modernist). She now sits on the Tasmanian Heritage Council and the NSW Heritage Committee, and chairs the Works Committee for Heritage Tasmania. She also sits on the Australian Institute of Architects National Gender Equity Committee and the AIA’s Tasmanian Chapter Council. She is involved in a Tasmanian AIA 20thC listing/recognition taskforce.

Since 2004 she has been a designer/director for the Sydney-based jewellery business, Venerari, which specializes in modern jewellery using coloured gems. Although the Strand Arcade store closed in 2013, she continues to design bespoke modern jewellery commissions for clients around the world.

Genevieve has taught architecture and construction at universities in Bath UK, Sydney, Tasmania and Newcastle for many years and has also been a guest speaker, critic and external examiner on many occasions. She sat on the AIA NSW Awards jury in 2009 and 2011, the DIA National Awards in 2015, and chaired the AIA Tasmanian Awards Jury in 2017.

Genevieveʼs design work has featured in a number of publications including the Sydney Morning Herald, Inside Out Magazine and Vogue Living. She has written for the Fifth Estate, the Architectural Review, Architecture Australia and Houses Magazine. Her awards include the Board of Architects of NSW Medal 1991, the Sir John Sulman Prize (design) 1990 and the CHL Turner Memorial Prize (design) 1990. She was also awarded the JAA Award for Best Modern Opal design in 2006 and 2008.


  • Commonwealth St

  • Wallaroy Rd

  • Prospect St

  • Trumper Park

  • Gusto Cafe

  • Spectrum Gems

  • Cambridge Lane

  • Queens Park

  • Summerland

  • Venerari

  • Rose Bay

  • Gordon St

  • Redfern

  • Cascade St

  • Cornelian Bay

  • Bondi

  • Vaucluse

  • Lang Rd

  • Glebe

  • Sutherland St

  • Hurlstone Park

  • Moore Park Rd

  • Murruriundi

  • Norfolk St

  • Underwood St

  • Birrell St



  • First class Honours, University Medal 1991, University of Sydney
  • Board of Architects of NSW Medal 1991
  • Sir John Sulman Prize (design) 1990
  • CHL Turner Memorial Prize (design) 1990


  • JAA Award for Best Opal design 2008
  • JAA Award for best opal design 2006, also runner-up with 2nd piece in same category 2006


  • External Examiner, University of Tasmania 2014, 2008, 2007
  • Final year design studio, University of Sydney 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004
  • Final year design studio, University of Newcastle 2011, 2010
  • Guest critic UNSW, UTS 2009


  • Houses Magazine: Review of Fergus Scott’s’ practice March 2017
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Collins & Turner’s Balmoral House February 2017
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Andrew Burges’ North Bondi House October 2016
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Benn & Penna’s Surry Hills House July 2016
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Eva Marie Prineas’ practice June 2016
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Nobbs Radford practice April 2016
  • Architecture Australia: Review of David Boyle Marrickville ‘3 Houses’ November 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Tim Greer TZG project November 2015
  • “The Terrace House – Reimagined for the Australian Way of Life”, Thames & Hudson, Oct 2015
  • Architecture Australia: Review of Fugitive Structures at SCAF September 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Review of David Boyle Marrickville courtyard house September 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Virginia Kerridge house Kensington July 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Prineas project July 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Co-Op Annandale House May 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Practice profile Carter Williamson March 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Hannah Tribe, McMahon’s Pt house Feb 2015
  • Architecture Australia: Platform Profile on Welsh and Major, Jan 2015
  • Houses Magazine: Profile on the work of Tobias Partners Dec 2014
  • “The Forever House – Time-Honoured Australian Homes”, Thames & Hudson Oct 2014
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Balmain House by Candelapas October 2014
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Lindfield House by Andrew Burges July 2014
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Hunters Hill House by Arkhefield Feb 2014
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Fern Tree House by McGlashan Everist May 2013
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Balmain House by Melocco/Moore July 2013
  • Houses Magazine: Review of Balmain House by Innovarchi May 2012
  • Architecture Australia ‘Detail’ March 2013
  • Architectural Review/Australian Design Review ‘Boomerang Beach House’ April 2010
  • The Fifth Estate, articles July/Aug/Oct/Nov 2009, March 2010
  • Art Review for Michael Reid Art March 2006

Jewellery Design

We opened Venerari on the ground floor of the Strand Arcade in 2004 upon returning to Australia after a decade of living in the UK/US. We were determined to provide an alternative to branded mass-produce diamond-dominated fine jewellery in Australia. We specialised in modern designs using coloured gems, and we reinvented the approach to setting opal (no marsupials around the gems!).

We realised that the only way we could continue to run a shop, and make the things we liked, was to make them more cheaply – offshore, in large runs, using lesser metals, cheaper gems. That took away the process of working with clients, and of making, which was the part of the business we loved. So we shut the shop and now make to order.

In addition, we make some pieces to sell, and sometimes we find quirky vintage pieces that we think our 6,000 past customers (and their friends) will like.

Find out more


Architectural only

  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Lake Macquarie Dream Home Hidden away” by Trish Croaker about Lake Macquarie/Summerland project, 31.08.14
  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Treasuring the Landscape of the Past’ by Trish Croaker, about Queens Park house, 22.02.13
  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Rear window – Home & Away Design Trends’, by Stephen Crafti on Hurlstone Park house, 07.06.13
  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Hemmed in House Now Flooded With Light” by Trish Croaker about Birrell St House, 14.10.12
  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Human Evolution” by Stephen Craft on Sutherland St house, 03.05.11
  • Sydney Morning Herald Domain “Classic in a New Light” on Glebe house, 01.08.09
  • Sydney Sun-Herald “Stripped to the Bones” on Cascade St house, 15.7.07

About interiors

About being an architect and a jeweller at the same time

About Jewellery