Posts tagged with "Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)":
“The time for failure is now” reads the front cover of Afterparti, printed emphatically in sans-serif, white type on thick, matte black paper. It’s not the only message on the magazine's cover: “Bring the justice of space to people. Build a new political conversation. You are all the agents of change,” reads another, followed by “p22” — the page where such inspiration can be found. Already, Afterparti, a new architecture "zine" hot off the presses, feels like a call to arms.
Afterparti, I should point out, is a collective, not just a publication. In June 2018, the group held a panel discussion at the Royal College of Art in London also titled, “The time for failure is now.” The group's inaugural members comprise Shukri Sultan; Aoi Philips; Tara Okeke; Marwa El Mubark; Thomas Aquilina; Nile Bridgeman; Samson Famusan; Josh Fenton, and Siufan Adey. Together, the collective is striving to further platforms for radical, underrepresented voices, advocating for a culture of collaboration and inclusivity. “We want to fail better,” they state inside their first magazine, which also includes an interview (read: argument) with Royal Institute of British Architects President Ben Derbyshire, survival tips and tunes for BAME (Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic) architects, and articles from leading BAME industry professionals such as Pooja Agrawal of municipal planning initiative Public Practice and Akile Scafe-Smith of London design firm, Resolve.
AN sat down with Afterparti—who respond in this article as a collective rather than individually, as is the “parti line”—to find out more.
AN: What’s in the name "Afterparti"? AP: Afterparti is in two parts. The term parti is something that we all share in the language of architecture. What does parti mean? A big idea, a conceptual framing device. And so we take the term ‘parti' to connect with our architectural background and inject playfulness — by which we mean accessible, as the events we put on are for everyone. We want people to share their experiences and input on how we can make the city better for everyone. There's an openness to the term, too. We could roll out a series of different interpretations, but hopefully, the kinds of things we write or put on or stage or curate are going to be open-ended and not too closed. We want it to be a conversation that goes beyond the normal sphere of architecture. Ignoring race, it's often just middle-class people talking among themselves.
The term 'Afterparti' also suggests ourselves as a continuation of the New Architectural Writers (N.A.W.) program, as an idea, a platform, to bring together underrepresented voices.
What is the N.A.W. program? Is that how you all met? N.A.W is a free writing program for black and minority ethnic people interested in writing about design. There was a mass email which asked: Are you under 30, based in London, interested in writing, with a background in architecture and of this minority? You kinda had to do it, it didn't matter how busy you were — that’s how we felt at least.
Really what we're doing is an extension of this program but at the same time is the idea of events and a zine series. It’s always about extending that conversation as well: the conversation that happens on stage can happen in print and therefore there's an afterlife to any event.
Why have you chosen to focus on failure? It was definitely a collective decision. Regarding the initial event we held, we wanted to find a theme for the panelists who were going to be on stage for a live debate. We wanted them to speak more openly and personally about ideas and issues that that might not be able to answer through the theme of failure. We challenged them on how they adapt and respond to failure, putting people on the spot, stopping them from giving us a readymade answer.
In fact, that's a theme within our work. The zine is a very personal product. Whoever's article you read, it's a very personal piece. We put ourselves into it. The N.A.W. program came about because there's not enough of us [minorities who are writing] out there, so we take great pride putting ourselves into our work, in part, because we have a different background to share. We are a disadvantaged generation, there is potential failure at every turn. Failure isn’t just a singular event, it's systemic and we can develop ourselves through it.
Why a zine instead of more events? The basis of why we came together was because we could all write in a sense and that was a common denominator. Afterparti is a lot more than just writing, everybody is doing different things and we have different skillsets. Events can take a range: we could be curating something, throwing a disco party, or something else, who knows what might come next. The zine, however, is always the reflection of those events. In this case, it builds upon the panel discussion we had at the Royal College of Art.
The zine also a way of opening up our platform to other BAME people within architecture.
What made you produce your own publication instead of writing for somewhere else? It's not that we disagree with everything that architectural journalism stands for, it's just that we want a different flavor, something that represents us and how we feel about [architecture].
Aside from N.A.W., we've made it our own thing. There's no glossy front cover, no building reviews. This was all a deliberate choice. We were less interested in the aesthetics of single projects — though we don't ignore this by any stretch, we just don't feel as if what we have to stay stems from this. Of course, we do care about aesthetics in general, our magazine is beautiful! However, all of our articles are socially minded and/or politically motivated. It's less about a shallow, pictorial review of architecture. We are nine individuals, as has been said, all with individual takes and perspectives, on architectural practice and education and the myriad of things that entwine all of that and more together. Our approach to creating this written product comes from a place of play as well as a place of process. Plus we've only got so many pages as well, we want to write about the stuff that's important — important, but often overlooked.
Did you fail along the way? Of course! We tried to have the awareness that we are in the midst of failure, but that's not a new thing.
What’s next for Afterparti? We are going to try to take more opportunities with different groups and not just stay strictly architecture. We want to continue going outside that sphere: being more intersectional and maintaining accessibility.
That's all we can say for now! Whatever the next theme is, it's going to be about holding the relevant people in power to account. It's always going to be a call to action.
I appreciate respect is not given lightly and must be earned. I am hugely grateful for the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of Ben Derbyshire and past presidents, people who I have huge respect for. I wish to build on their successes. The RIBA is a fantastic organisation with great resources, particularly its staff who I am keen to support more than ever. As individuals and as an institution, we need to come together to make the most of our assets, and make the case for our profession. We need to gather evidence and realise a more significant role and position in business and society. We must focus more on the pertinent issues that will increase the quality of service we provide and the added value we can bring. We must reduce our overheads and the loss of colleagues and expertise as they leave our profession because of the economics of our situation. Talent is universal and opportunity into and upward through our profession must be too.Jones will serve as RIBA President until September 2021.
- Foster + Partners (Chair)
- Lipscomb Jones Architects (Architectural Assistant standard sub-lead)
- Hawkins/Brown (Architect standard sub-lead)
- Seven Architecture (Architectural Assistant assessment sub-lead)
- Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios (Architectural Assistant assessment sub-lead)
- Scott Brownrigg (Architect assessment sub-lead)
- Pollard Thomas Edwards (Architecture Apprenticeships Guide sub-lead)
- Allford Hall Monaghan Morris
- Grimshaw Architects
- HLM Architects
- HTA Design LLP
- Perkins + Will
- PLP Architecture
- Stanton Williams
- tp bennett
The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) announced its shortlist for this year’s best new building. From a photography studio to the British Museum’s latest addition, six buildings will be pitted against one another in their race to claim the top spot of RIBA’s 2017 Stirling Prize.
In its 22nd year, the prize is considered to be Britain’s most prestigious architecture award. The jury considers a range of criteria, including design vision, originality, capacity to stimulate, engagement with occupants and visitors, accessibility, sustainability, and the level of client satisfaction.
“This year’s shortlist typifies everything that is special about U.K. architecture: this is not just a collection of exceptionally well-designed buildings but spaces and places of pure beauty, surprise, and delight,” RIBA President Jane Duncan said in a press release.The winner will be announced on October 31, 2017.
British Museum World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre Architect: Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners Structural Engineers: Ramboll M&E Engineers: Arup Acoustic Engineers: Arup Landscape Architects: Gillespies Lighting Design: Arup
Previous winners Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners (for Maggie’s Centre London in 2009 and Madrid's Barajas Airport in 2006) will be looking for their third win with their subterranean extension of the British institution, which includes conservation studios and a column-free exhibition hall that's almost 12,000 square feet in size.
City of Glasgow College - City Campus Architect: Reiach & Hall Architects and Michael Laird Architects Structural Engineer: Arup Landscape Architectrank: infraser landscape architecture M&E Engineer: FES with Hulley and Kirkwood Acoustics: ARUP Acoustics Interiors Graven Signage: Studio LR
Reiach & Hall Architects and Michael Laird Architects were shortlisted last year for the City of Glasgow College’s Riverside Campus. This year, their latest addition to the university is in the spotlight for both its immense scale and its restraint in material and form.
Hastings Pier Architect: dRMM Architects Structural Engineer: Ramboll UK Environmental / M&E Engineer: Ramboll UK Marine Engineers: Ramboll UK
Hasting’s newest seaside pier by firm dRMM Architects (who have been shortlisted twice before) is a revitalization success story of a decrepit pier turned into a vibrant public space through collaboration between community, engineers, and architects.
Command of the Oceans Architect: Baynes and Mitchell Architects M&E Engineer: Skelly & Couch Experiential Designer: Land Design Studio Structural & Civil Engineers: Price & Myers Lighting Design Studio: ZNA
Command of the Oceans is a redevelopment of the Chatham Historic Dockyard in Chatham, England. The transformation of a group of shipbuilding sheds into a new visitor attraction is bound together by a new, striking visitor hall entrance.
Barrett’s Grove Architect: Groupwork + Amin Taha Structural Engineers: Webb Yates Engineers M&E Engineers: Syntegra
A residential project, Barrett’s Grove features six apartments with wicker basket balconies that jut out onto the street. The building is built with timber and wrapped in perforated brick.
Photography Studio for Juergen Teller Architect: 6a architects Landscape Architects: Dan Pearson Studio Structural Engineers: Price & Myers M&E Engineers: Max Fordham LLP
The smallest project out of them all is by 6a architects, who exploited the narrow plot of land to create a sequence of three volumes for a flexible workspace. Light is brought in with interspersed courtyard gardens.
A unique exhibition opened last week at the RIBA in London that compares schemes from two of the most iconic architects of the 20th Century: Mies van der Rohe and James Stirling.
The exhibition, titled Mies van der Rohe & James Stirling: Circling the Square, takes a look at the unrealized Mansion House Square proposal by the former that was succeeded 20 years later by James Stirling's newly listed No. 1 Poultry scheme. Sited in central London, Mies's modernist proposal (a stylistic antonym of what was actually erected) drew ire from the public and monarchy, though the story, up until now, has likely been a mystery to those not old enough to know of its existence.
The exhibition is the first time the public has been able to compare and contrast the two architects’ responses to a tricky site. The curators of the exhibition—Marie Bak Mortensen, head of exhibitions and Vicky Wilson, assistant curator, RIBA—have spent the last two-and-half years researching and sourcing a vast collection of photography, drawings, models, articles, and artifacts. Speaking to The Architect's Newspaper, they said their motivation behind the exhibition was to "dig behind the official story," fraught with controversy and public opinion, to expose the architecture beneath.
Mortensen and Wilson, the original designers of the RIBA architecture gallery, have returned to design an exhibition consisting of steel, stained wood, and floating tables. A 1:96 scale model of the Mansion House scheme dominates the exhibition, which was used as a marketing tool to impress the public ten years after the passing of Mies himself. The highly detailed model of a proposal which was once dubbed a "glass stump" by Prince Charles, has been restored back its former glory.
During its ascension into the public mainframe, the focal point of opposition to the scheme did not pertain to the scale of the 18 story tower of glass and bronze, but rather the vast public space proposed beneath and around. It is a public space which would be cherished today, yet in the 1960s it was seen as space which could incite unrest—a notion particularly toxic amid the wave of IRA terrorism in the UK. Circling the Square tells the story of the tumultuous 40-year journey of the site, culminating in the completion of No. 1 Poultry which went up in 1997, five years after Stirling's death.
Mies van der Rohe & James Stirling: Circling the Square runs through June 25 and is on show at The Architecture Gallery, RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London.