The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and Hull UK City of Culture 2017 have jointly commissioned Chile-based architects Pezo von Ellrichshausen and Swiss artist Felice Varini to design an ambitious temporary outdoor structure in the historic heart of Hull, a port city on the country's east coast. The project, which is part of the Hull 2017 "Look Up" programme of public art installations, will "transform Trinity Square with sixteen galvanized steel columns arranged in a grid formation in front of Hull Minister to highlight the symmetry of its façade."
Pezo von Ellrichshausen and Felice Varini Unveil Designs for a Civic Installation in the UK's 2017 City of Culture
In a world in which the "happy" architectural image feels all-pervasive, the British architect and academic Dr. Timothy Brittain-Catlin reveals its darker side suggesting why, and how, we might come to celebrate it. You can read Brittain-Catlin's essays on British postmodernism here, and on colorful architecture, here.
"Contemporary buildings celebrate openness, light and free-flowing movement," says the President of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) in the March 2017 issue of the Institute’s journal. This is what at my school we call an "announcement", rather than a statement of fact. Indeed, all architects and architecture students hear these words all the time. But are they true? Should they be?
This article was originally published by Common Edge as "The Confused and Impoverished State of Architectural Research."
For a discipline that thinks of itself as learned, scholarly research eludes the architectural profession. This is a long standing problem. “Failure,” John Ruskin wrote in his 1848 introduction to The Seven Lamps of Architecture, “is less frequently attributable to either insufficiency of means or impatience of labor, than to a confused understanding of the thing actually to be done.”
Roughly 150 years later, Harry Nilsson—surely singing to architects—opined in his song, Joy that if you’re unable to find the answer to a question, you may not have a question worth asking (and probably don’t have a problem worth solving). In between Ruskin and rock and roll, is William Peña, the author of the architectural programming guide, Problem Seeking, who nearly a half-century ago wrote that “you can’t solve a problem unless you know what it is.”
The 2017 winner of the UK’s most prestigious architecture award, the Stirling Prize, will be announced on October 31. Leading up to the main event, The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has released its list of the six shortlisted buildings, a collection that has left many critics scratching their heads. What the list left out seems to be as noteworthy as what was included, and while critics’ opinions on individual buildings differ, they seem mostly united in finding the overall list uninspiring and underwhelming. Read on to find out what they had to say.
A new exhibition of commissioned work by artist Pablo Bronstein at London's Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) will explore "ubiquitous" neo-Georgian developments as exemplar of a British vernacular. The show—Pablo Bronstein: Conservatism, or The Long Reign of Pseudo-Georgian Architecture—will feature fifty new drawings of buildings constructed during the second half of the 20th Century in "an ostensibly neo-Georgian style." These will be presented alongside historical Georgian and neo-Georgian material chosen by Bronstein from the RIBA’s collections.
Architecture, as both a profession and the built environment, currently finds itself at a crossroads in trying to adapt to a world in constant flux. Cities and its people face continuous socio-economic, political and environmental change on a daily basis, prompting a necessary rethink in the evolution of sustainable urbanization. With a focus on housing, society and cultural heritage, RIBA’s International Conference, Change in the City, aims to offer insight into the “New Urban Agenda” and how architects can play an interdisciplinary role in future urban development.
Speaking in an interview ahead of the conference, Norman Foster is a strong advocate for a careful consideration of what aspects of urban life need to be prioritized when designing cities of the future. For an increasingly global society, Foster stresses the need for architecture to surpass buildings and tackle its greatest obstacle – global warming, honing in on its roots and factors involved to create viable urban solutions.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has released an official statement on design for fire safety following the tragic Grenfell Tower fire on June 14. The causes and aftermath of the catastrophic fire, which ravaged 27 storeys of the council estate in the London borough of North Kensington are currently under investigation, with a team of 250+ working on operations including recovering and identifying victims (the death toll has risen to 80+) according to recent reports from the BBC and the Met Police. The aluminium-composite cladding Reynobond PE - identified as one of the main reasons for the fire’s spread up the building’s façade has sparked outrage over failed safety regulations and debate over the lack of responsibility behind the building’s (and many others) construction overall. Further fire safety tests revealed the cladding to be present in up to 60 similar council estates with more being urged to submit samples for testing.
For a quick summary, we’ve covered some key points from each of the 3 sections addressed RIBA's statement below:
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced 49 exemplary projects as winners of the 2017 RIBA National Awards. This year’s list features projects from a wide range of typologies and leading architecture firms including Herzog & de Meuron, Foster + Partners, WilkinsonEyre, and Caruso St John Architects.
As the RIBA's Largest Outpost Launches in Liverpool, A New Exhibition Seeks to Reveal the City's Maverick History
The Royal Institute of British Architects' (RIBA) new national architecture center, RIBA North, will open this week (June 17th) in Liverpool as part of the Mann Island project – a complex of waterfront buildings designed by Broadway Malyan and completed in 2013. At the core of the launch of the Institute's largest national outpost will sit an exhibition, located in the new City Gallery, exploring Liverpool’s "long, often maverick, history of architectural ambition, its willingness to take risks and consider audacious [architectural] schemes."
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced 7 projects as winners of the 2017 RIBA North West Regional Awards, with top prize of North West Building of the Year going to Foster + Partners’ Maggie’s at the Robert Parfett Building. These seven buildings will now continue on to compete in the RIBA National Awards, whose winners will make up the shortlist for the prestigious Stirling Prize.
“This year’s awards represent two parallel but linked trends. One is characterised by a dominant interest in the value of re-used existing buildings that benefit from regeneration. The other is the regenerative effect of new buildings themselves,” commented Graham Morrison, North West Regional Jury Chair.
“Though ‘ordinary’ buildings such as housing or offices are coming close to an award-winning level, they are, in their nature, ‘pathfinders’ and there is an understandable caution in their level of investment. This risk pattern favours the existing buildings that more obviously benefit from previous investment but when this caution is eclipsed by confidence, the truly exceptional emerges and this is evidenced by this year’s overall winner.”
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has named 50 projects as winners of 2017 RIBA London Regional Awards, including the London Building of the Year, “Photography Studio for Juergen Teller” by 6a architects.
“The year has demonstrated once again the breadth of the capital’s architectural output at the very high level that the RIBA programme requires, and the juries took enormous pleasure in selecting a most exemplary set of schemes,” said Jury chair Matthew Lloyd.
Selected from a 85-strong shortlist, these 50 projects will now go on to compete in RIBA's National Awards program, the winners of which will create the shortlist for the RIBA Stirling Prize – the highest award for architecture in the UK.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced 17 winning projects in the 2017 RIBA East Awards. Topped by Walters & Cohen Architects' Vajrasana Buddhist Retreat Centre in Suffolk which won the RIBA East Building of the Year Award, these 17 regional winners will go on to compete in RIBA's national awards, with the best in the national awards ultimately going forward to compete for the Stirling Prize.
"It was just fabulous to see the diversity and exceptional quality of buildings around the region," said RIBA East Regional Director Louise Todd. "The jury had a really difficult task in selecting the winners, which says a lot for the strength of the shortlist and the creativity of the architects involved."
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced the first wave of their 2017 RIBA Regional Awards, beginning with the West Midlands region. Six projects were selected as winners from the region, which includes the city of Birmingham and its surrounding area.
“This year's winning projects prove that a good architecture should allow its user a space and time to absorb and to reflect,” commented Regional Jury Chair, Natalia Maximova. “The selected designs frame our experience of the buildings and spaces rather than dictate it. They highlight the fact that there is no true architecture without a clear vision and a strong concept. Originality remains a highly valued commodity and a source of inspiration for others and therefore should be recognised.
A total of 85 buildings from the British capital have been shortlisted for the 2017 RIBA London Awards, including projects from Wilkinson Eyre, AHMM, Allies and Morrison, Herzog & de Meuron, and Rogers Stirk Harbour. All 85 buildings will now be visited and carefully assessed by one of four regional juries, before the regional winners are selected in June of this year. Winning projects will continue on to compete for the RIBA Stirling Prize - the UK's highest honor for architecture.
See a complete list of shortlisted buildings after the break.
Liverpool will soon be home to the Royal Institute of British Architect’s (RIBA) new national centre for architecture, RIBA North, which will be a new focal point for visitors to learn about architecture, as well as the culture and history behind Liverpool’s built environment. Occupying a part of the Mann Island Buildings designed by Broadway Malyan in 2013, RIBA North will offer a host of new opportunities for architectural discovery and education, including exhibitions, lectures, tours, and a digital model of the city.
“At RIBA North, we have a building with museum conditions which will offer a magnificent opportunity to view RIBA’s world-renowned historic collections showing hundreds of years of the UK’s extraordinary architectural history,” explained RIBA President Jane Duncan. “We are particularly proud to strengthen our cultural and creative offering in the north of England, and to enable many more people to explore and understand the enormous impact that architecture and design has on all our lives.”
Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios has been selected as the winners of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) competition to design the new Faculty of Arts Building at the University of Warwick, in Coventry, England. Lauded for its flexibility and collaboration-fostering design, the winning proposal was selected over finalist entries from Foster + Partners, Grimshaw, White Arkitekter and Wilkinson Eyre.
In the 1960s James Stirling asked Ludwig Mies van der Rohe why he didn’t design utopian visions for new societies, like those of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broadacre City or Corbusier’s Cité Radieuse. Mies replied that he wasn’t interested in fantasies, but only in “making the existing city beautiful.” When Stirling recounted the conversation several decades later it was to the audience of a public enquiry convened in London – he was desperately trying to save Mies’ only UK design from being rejected in planning.
It couldn’t be done: the scheme went unbuilt; the drawings were buried in a private archive. Now, for the first time in more than thirty years, Mies’ Mansion House Square will be presented to the public in both a forthcoming exhibition at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)—Mies van der Rohe and James Stirling: Circling the Square—and, if it is successful, a book currently being funded through Kickstarter by the REAL foundation.
Update: Paulo Mendes da Rocha was today awarded the RIBA Royal Gold Medal at a ceremony at the RIBA headquarters in London. The article below was originally published when the award was announced on September 29, 2016.
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has awarded its 2017 Royal Gold Medal to Paulo Mendes da Rocha. The 87-year-old is among Brazil's most celebrated architects, known for his special brand of Brazilian Brutalism which has had a dramatic effect in his home country, particularly in the city of São Paulo. The award continues a spectacularly successful year for Mendes da Rocha, who won the Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement at the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale in May, and was announced the 2016 Premium Imperiale Laureate just weeks ago. Mendes da Rocha has also previously received the Pritzker Prize in 2006 and the Mies van der Rohe Prize for his Pinacoteca de São Paulo project in 2000.
Mendes da Rocha becomes the second Brazilian to win the RIBA's Gold Medal, after Oscar Niemeyer received the award in 1998. He joins other luminaries such as Zaha Hadid (2016), Frank Gehry (2000), Norman Foster (1983), and Frank Lloyd Wright (1941).