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Sir John Soane: The Latest Architecture and News

World Architecture Festival Announces Winners of the 2018 Drawing Prize

05:00 - 18 October, 2018
World Architecture Festival Announces Winners of the 2018 Drawing Prize, American Dream or American Nightmare / Yue Ma. Image Courtesy of World Architecture Festival
American Dream or American Nightmare / Yue Ma. Image Courtesy of World Architecture Festival

The World Architecture Festival, with co-curators Make Architects and the Sir John Soane’s Museum, announced today the winners of their annual Architecture Drawing Prize, established in 2017 to recognize the “continuing importance of hand drawing, whilst also embracing the creative use of digitally produced renderings.”

Denise Scott Brown to Receive the 2018 Soane Medal

16:00 - 7 September, 2018
Denise Scott Brown to Receive the 2018 Soane Medal, Denise Scott Brown in front of The Strip, Las Vegas, NV, US, 1966, Photo by Robert Venturi, courtesy of Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates, Inc.
Denise Scott Brown in front of The Strip, Las Vegas, NV, US, 1966, Photo by Robert Venturi, courtesy of Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates, Inc.

Next month, American architect Denise Scott Brown will receive the 2018 Soane Medal, an award given to "architects who have made a major contribution to their field, through their built work, through education, history and theory." A powerhouse jury that included Sir David Chipperfield, Paul Goldberger, Farshid Moussavi, Alice Rawsthorn, Oliver Wainwright selected Scott Brown for the second edition of the award. The 2017 Soane Medal was given to Rafael Moneo.

Sir David Chipperfield, Trustee of Sir John Soane’s Museum, said: ‘The jury considered many outstanding candidates; however Denise Scott Brown stood apart and was the jury’s unanimous choice. Scott Brown’s contribution across architecture, urbanism, theory and education over the last fifty years has been profound and far-reaching. Her example has been an inspiration to many, and we are delighted to honour her with the awarding of the Soane Medal.’

The Power of Architectural Drawing: The Sketches That Saved St. Mark's

04:00 - 24 August, 2017
The Power of Architectural Drawing: The Sketches That Saved St. Mark's, <a href=“https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Study_of_the_Marble_Inlaying_on_the_Front_of_the_Casa_Loredan.jpg”>Study of the Marble Inlaying on the Front of the Casa Loredan, Venice. Pencil, watercolour, and bodycolour, 32 x 26.7cm</a> (1845) licensed under Public Domain. Image Courtesy of John Ruskin
Study of the Marble Inlaying on the Front of the Casa Loredan, Venice. Pencil, watercolour, and bodycolour, 32 x 26.7cm (1845) licensed under Public Domain. Image Courtesy of John Ruskin

This short essay, written by the author and critic Jonathan Glancey, coincides with the launch of the inaugural Architecture Drawing Prize – a competition curated by the World Architecture Festival, the Sir John Soane's Museum, and Make. The deadline for the award is the 18th September 2017 and successful entries will be exhibited in both London and Berlin.

For John Ruskin, Venetian Gothic design in the guise of polychromatic gasworks in Brentford, ornate factory chimneys in Croydon, glistering gin palaces in Bloomsbury and even the well-meaning Reform Club in Manchester was nothing short of anathema. Even at their risible best, these flamboyant Victorian buildings were idle travesties of the influential 19th Century critic’s beloved Ca’ d’Oro and Palazzo Ducale adorning the Grand Canal.

"Hallo Darkness!" Why Not All Buildings Need To Be Cheerful All Of The Time

14:00 - 7 August, 2017
"Hallo Darkness!" Why Not All Buildings Need To Be Cheerful All Of The Time, The Destruction of the Temple of Solomon, by Maarten van Heemskerck. From Freemasonry and the Enlightenment, by James Stevens Curl (Public Domain). Image
The Destruction of the Temple of Solomon, by Maarten van Heemskerck. From Freemasonry and the Enlightenment, by James Stevens Curl (Public Domain). Image

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?

Rafael Moneo Wins Inaugural Soane Medal for Contribution to Architecture

14:00 - 17 July, 2017
Rafael Moneo Wins Inaugural Soane Medal for Contribution to Architecture, National Museum of Roman Art © <a href='https://www.flickr.com/photos/pictfactory/2842858053'>Flickr user pictfactory</a> licensed under <a href='https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/'>CC BY 2.0</a>
National Museum of Roman Art © Flickr user pictfactory licensed under CC BY 2.0

Spanish Architect Rafael Moneo has been selected as the recipient of the first-ever Soane Medal for contribution to architecture, presented by Sir John Soane’s Museum in London. As the medal winner, Moneo will be the first speaker to take part in the Soane Annual Lecture, established to “ [recognize] architects, artists, writers and others whose work has broadened and enriched understandings of architecture and the built environment.”

“We are delighted to announce this new Soane Annual Lecture and Medal, and look forward to the significant voices and ideas it will bring to the museum,” Sir David Chipperfield, Trustee of Sir John Soane’s Museum said. “Our aim is to promote architectural culture, as Soane himself worked so tirelessly to do, and we hope it will become an important event in the London calendar.’

Bruce Boucher, Director of Sir John Soane’s Museum, added: ‘We are pleased to inaugurate the Soane Annual Lecture and Medal, and honoured that Rafael Moneo will be the first recipient. His buildings, writings, and teaching have immeasurably enriched the field of architecture, and his lecture promises to be a significant contribution to the contemporary discussion.”

Learn more about the award below.

Experience the Sir John Soane's Museum, Virtually

04:00 - 18 December, 2016
Experience the Sir John Soane's Museum, Virtually, Temple of Vesta in Plaster of Paris model by François Fouquet. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum
Temple of Vesta in Plaster of Paris model by François Fouquet. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum

The Sir John Soane’s Museum is often cited as a seminal inspiration for architects of all generations. Located in London's Lincoln's Inn Fields, the house—designed by Soane (born in 1753), architect of the Bank of England—is a remarkable biographical bricolage of unique spaces, objects and ideas. Kept exactly as it was at the time of Soane's death in 1837, the museum is packed with paintings, sculpture, furniture and drawings – all curated and composed by the architect himself to "enhance their poetic qualities."

Soane’s ingenious design for the courts in Westminster. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum Temple of Vesta in Plaster of Paris model by François Fouquet. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum Pompeii in 1820 showing partial excavation. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum Temple of Vesta modelled in cork by Giovanni Altieri. Image © Sir John Soane's Museum + 8

London's Soane's Museum Unveil A Series Of New Spaces

05:15 - 21 May, 2015
London's Soane's Museum Unveil A Series Of New Spaces, Courtesy of Soane Museum
Courtesy of Soane Museum

In an article for The Observer, Rowan Moore dives into a set of newly recreated rooms in London's Soane's Museum, a gallery dedicated to Sir John Soane's collection of architectural curiosities set within his eccentric former home. The experience, according to Moore, "of an internal world of unknown boundaries" has just become more extensive. Visitors will now be afforded the opportunity to visit a series of private spaces that give "a view into Soane’s bizarre mind," following extensive restoration work led by Julian Harrap.