The Opera House is half-naked. White crosses score the roof shells where tiles are still to be placed. Cranes hang above the scaffolding like prehistoric animals, and little worker ants clamber over the building.
These are the intimate cubbyholes and crannies of the building never seen before, in 178 black-and-white photographs taken by master photographer Max Dupain during the construction of architect Joern Utzon's building between 1959 and 1973.
The prints, previously held in a private collection by the family of Peter Hall, the architect who completed the Opera House, were donated to the Powerhouse Museum yesterday by the medical technology company ResMed Ltd. The museum believes this is the first time most of the photographs will be on public display.