‘Work in Progress’ is the watchword. Dates: 1—30th June. The month-long, citywide celebration of architectural experimentation, thinking and practice annual London Festival of Architecture (LFA) will take place at venues across the city. There’s our selection of the exhibitions that you can not miss at London Festival of Architecture this June.
1. A Clockwork Jerusalem
9 May—6 June
AA Gallery, 36 Bedford Square, WC1B 3ES
From Stonehenge to council estates, from Ebenezer Howard to Cliff Richard, from ruins and destruction to back-to-the-land rural fantasies, A Clockwork Jerusalem explores how the international influences of modernism became mixed with long standing British sensibilities. Through architecture, records, books and adverts, the exhibition examines how traditions of the romantic, sublime and pastoral, as well as interests in technology and science fiction, were absorbed to create a specifically British form of modernism.
A Clockwork Jerusalem focuses on British modernism at the moment it was at its most ambitious socially, politically and architecturally, but also on the point of collapse. A variety of large scale projects, images, objects and artefacts offer insights into the way architecture was central to manufacturing a new vision of society at a scale inconceivable today. The modern future of Britain was built from an unlikely combination of interests and these projects have changed our physical and imaginative landscapes.
Concept, Curation and Exhibition Design by FAT Architecture and Crimson Architectural Historians. Â Commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion, 14th International Architecture Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia 2014.
2. MADS (Materiality, Architecture & Design + Science)
Jestico + Whiles
Jestico + Whiles Gallery, 1 Cobourg Street, NW1 2HP
Jestico + Whiles, an architectural firm based in London, has just completed the National Graphene Institute, a research centre at the University of Manchester dedicated to the study of graphene and its commercial applications.
The world’s first 2D material, graphene has broad potential applications across medicine, technology and, in the field of the built environment, it could transform the existing materials we use. Currently a ‘work in progress’, graphene composites could one day be the material of choice with which to construct buildings, given its multiplicity of properties. Along with a collection of images retracing the design process of the newly opened building, the exhibition will present design proposals exploring aesthetic and technical possibilities offered by the uses of graphene in the built environment.
The pieces exhibited will be created by a team of architects and designers as a reflection on the themes of materiality, architectural design and science. There will also be an exploration of patterns generated in various fields of science used as inspiration in the built environment.
With Graphene Week also taking place mid-June, the exhibition will stimulate discussion and debate amongst designers, industry and the public about the application of existing and emerging technologies.
3. Japanese Temple Pavilion at Dorich House Museum
School of Architecture and Landscape, Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture, Kingston University
30 May—3 June
Dorich House Museum, 67 Kingston Vale, SW15 3RN
The architecture students from Studio 3.2 at Kingston University led by tutors Takeshi Hayatsu and Simon Jones will collaborate with the Faculty’s 3D Workshop and the Stanley Picker Gallery to install a wooden temple structure in the garden of Dorich House, Kingston Hill. Coinciding with an event called ‘History in Making’ at Dorich House in February 2015, this is the second occasion that the Studio will work with Stanley Picker Gallery to build temporary structures for local communities in the Kingston area.
The Studio has been building temporary wooden structures for the last three years with the Faculty’s 3D Workshops, as part of the on-going investigation into timber construction. All based upon historic timber structures from around the world, to date they have included, a footbridge from Kintaikyo, Iwakuni Japan, the spire formwork from Salisbury Cathedral, England, and the Woodland Cemetery Chapel, Stockholm Sweden. This year, the Studio will build an interpretation of the Temple Gate from Todaiji Nandaimon, Nara Japan.
4. Endo Shuhei: Paramodern Architecture 25/25
24 June—14 July
9am—5pm (closed weekends)
TOTO Gallery, 140–142 St. John Street, EC1V 4UA
This touring exhibition showcases 25 architectural models from a selection of the Japanese Architect Shuhei Endo’s work. So far, the exhibition has been shown in Stuttgart, Milan and Paris. Shuhei Endo (b.1960) established his studio, the Endo Shuhei Architect Institute, in 1988. His work ranges from small residential projects , cultural centres and educational buildings to large-scale sport stadia and infrastructure. Endo’s work is economical yet imbued with restless energy and deeper levels of meaning. The architectural models displayed in this touring exhibition operate like a Zen riddle, each one poised to become something else once the riddle is solved. In the introductory essay of Endo’s 2013 edition of a monograph published by Electa in 2002, Frédéric Migayrou, Professor of Architecture at UCL Bartlett, describes his work as follows: “A wall becomes a strip, a band that blends into the landscape, the roof is a single disk, suspended above a building.” Despite their playful qualities, Endo’s buildings have certain gravity. Having lived through the great Hanshin earthquake of 1997 himself, Endo is aware that buildings in Japan must be robust and serve to protect people from natural disasters rather than become further cause for casualties. The weightiness of his work is derived from his belief that social responsability is implicit in architecture. Endo’s work is compelling and deserves wider recognition outside Japan. This is Endo’s first major show in the UK.
5. Employment Land Portfolio—Drawings of Tottenham
Heyne Tillett Steel, 4 Pear Tree Court, EC1R 0DS
Lucinda Rogers will show a series of large works on paper that depict the workspaces, yards and skills of industrial manufacturing businesses and trades in Tottenham. The drawings will highlight the types of business that are directly threatened by Haringey Council’s plans to promote high-volume housing development in places where people work, which it describes as “restructuring the borough’s employment land portfolio”. The plans will put many active businesses at risk, jeopardising diversity and local jobs. Lucinda Rogers draws directly from life in ink, crayon and watercolour and often portrays working environments and parts of cities that are seldom seen. Along with others including Cass Cities and the Just Space network she is involved in combating the pervasive, short-sighted approach to regeneration that sees London consuming its own assets in pursuit of housing unit numbers. Engineers Heyne Tillett Steel will host the exhibition at their new premises in Clerkenwell.
6. Culture Shapes the Space: Work is always in Progress
China Design Centre
China Design Centre, The Building Centre, 26 Store Street, WC1E 7BT
China Design Centre presents six Chinese award-winning interior designers The first-ever showcase of Chinese interior designers based in China. China Design Centre will host an extraordinary workshop where some of these Andrew Martin International Design China award winners will discuss how their culture has shaped their vision, with UK architects and interior designers.
7. Urban Alchemy
UCL, see London Architecture Diary for details
Through imaginative salvage and experiments in chemical printmaking the project Urban Alchemy explores the material stories and processes of urban transformation. My Leverhulme artist residency in UCL Chemistry has allowed for a year of experimentation with and salvage of demolition site materials in a project where creative production and the poetry and politics of place combine with the science, agency and political ecology of materials.
The book itself is a 40 page hard cover cloth-bound gilt edged volume in the traditional of an alchemical ‘book of secrets’ exposing the narratives and techniques of the transformation of these materials over this year of experimentation and exchange. It examines a core ‘family’ of demolition site materials –zinc, copper, slate, brick, stone/concrete, steel, aluminium and asbestos through photographs from the demolition site, of the materials undergoing transformation in chemistry laboratory and print studio and of the image outcomes of these creative and chemical changes. This imagery sits alongside a series of poetic narratives of each of these materials.
8. Reinterpreting the Primitive Hut
The Cass Faculty of Art, Architecture and Design & Sir John Soane’s Museum
2 June—5 July
Closed Sundays, Mondays and Bank Holidays
Sir John Soane’s Museum, 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, WC2A 3BP
Sir John Soane’s Museum has invited students from seven architectural units at The Cass to respond to the theme of the Primitive Hut using Soane’s own research and materials, and then develop an installation that will sit outside the Museum throughout June as part of the London Festival of Architecture.The students and tutors from each unit – the latter of which includes Florian Beigel, Philip Christou, Stephen Taylor, Pierre D’Avoine and the Free Unit led by Robert Mull – were given unique access to Soane’s extensive collection on the subject, including drawings, books and models that he used to teach his own architecture students.
9. Organic Grid+—Vision of the Workplace of the Future
Cassidy + Wilson
Domus Tiles Showroom, 50—52 Great Sutton Street, EC1V 0DF
Take a look into the Workplace of the Future with Organic Grid+. The international awarding winning entry to Metropolis Magazine Workplace of the Future 2.0 competition by Cassidy + Wilson, gives a unique insight into what our working lives could be like in 2050. The Organic Grid+ sets out to create a conceptual blueprint for the future of the workplace and pushes the boundaries of the way we see our working environment and ask the question “What If?”The exhibition in a fun and informative experience letting users interact with the exhibit and gives people the chance to experience first-hand how technology and nature, often two opposing forces, can be brought together to create exciting opportunities for the future..Imagine a workplace where employees can harvest their own lunch, digitally customise their surroundings and hold meetings in a field 200ft above the ground! All this is possible via the Organic Grid+. Please be sure to bring smart phones and tablets to get the best experience.
Scott Brownrigg, 77 Endell Street, WC2H 9DZ
As part of the London Festival of Architecture 2015, international design practice Scott Brownrigg is holding a free public exhibition entitled “Phase/Dynamics” in the Gallery Space of its Endell Street office.
The exhibition is an expression of accumulation and synthesis in the design process focuses on the transcendental dimension of architecture. It aims to educate and highlight the direct, clear and subtle collective outputs of each RIBA Work Stage.
The exhibition launches with a free interactive workshop on Saturday 6 June which allows members of the public, design professionals and architectural students to consider the purpose of architecture and design as a way to encrypt ideals, to which people can relate to with their own creativity and visionary thoughts.
Through engaging such a timely and provocative topic, we want to provide visitors with the opportunity to explore their own creativity together with building a better understanding of the architectural educational model and the contemporary architectural process of professional immersion.