AA Museum Lab (Diploma Unit 15) students have launched a crowd-funding campaign to support the installation of their exhibition, PRESERVING DELAY, at Manifesta 12 in Palermo, a major international art event attracting visitors from all over the world.

Committed to relentlessly questioning the ever-changing role of cultural institutions, AA Museum Lab students have embraced the opportunity to collaborate with Manifesta to investigate the complexities of Palermo’s formal and informal cultural scene. For the past seven months the unit has been working closely with local collaborators on developing 10 exciting curatorial strategies and research projects based within the Mediterranean epicentre.

They are now raising funds in order to realise the project and construct the installation in time for the biennial’s launch on 16 June.

Find out more and support the campaign here: indiegogo.com/projects/preserving-delay-aa-museum-lab-books-design.

Date Submitted: 1/5/2018

Mohammed Makki and Milad Showkatbakhsh, authors of the grasshopper add-on Wallacei, will be giving a workshop in this year's eCAADe conference titled "Morphological Variation through Evolutionary Applications: Applications and Analyses of Multi-Objective Evolutionary Algorithms", taking place on the 17th and 18th of September. The workshop is an extension of their research being conducted at the AA under the supervision of Dr. Michael Weinstock. 

The aim of the workshop is to introduce participants to the application of evolutionary principles in design through the implementation of multi objective evolutionary algorithms, with a predominant focus on the efficient and comprehensive analysis of the empirical data outputted by the algorithm’s application. The workshop will primarily utilise the grasshopper add-ons ‘Octopus’ and ‘Wallacei’ to run and analyse the evolutionary simulations.

Participants to the workshop will gain knowledge on the theoretical background of the biological principles of evolution as well as its implementation in computation and design. Participants will gain expertise in developing design problems that are geared towards the application of multi objective evolutionary algorithms as well as the efficient translation of these problems within grasshopper 3D; equipping the user with a comprehensive understanding of the advantages and disadvantages of different algorithmic setups when running multi objective evolutionary algorithms.

To register and for more information, visit the eCAADe 2018 conference website at http://ecaade2018.p.lodz.pl.

Workshop Presenters:

Mohammed Makki
Architect, Researcher
Co-Founder - MSSM Associates
PhD Candidate – Architectural Association, UK
Architectural Association Emtech / Emergence Tutor
Authorised Rhino3D Trainer
M.Arch (dist) - AA Emtech, UK
Milad Showkatbakhsh
Computational Designer, Researcher
Ph.D. Candidate - Architectural Association, UK
Co-Developer of Wallacei
BSc. Architectural Engineering - Shahid Beheshti University, Iran
MArch - Pratt Institute, US
Sidney Katz Award for Design Excellence

Date Submitted: 27/4/2018

Alumna Madeleine Kessler has been chosen from over 500 entries for a seat on the UK’s National Infrastructure Commission’s Young Professionals Panel (YPP), along with Petra Marko, co-founder of Marko & Placemakers.

The panel, launched today by the National Infrastructure Commission chair John Armitt, is made up of young architects, engineers and designers, and will advise the body as it develops the UK’s first ever National Infrastructure Assessment.

Madeleine, a project architect at Haptic, received her AA Diploma in 2013 and taught on the AA Summer School for a number of years. Reflecting on her appointment, she said: ’I hope that by being a part of the YPP I will be able to ensure that an emphasis is placed on good design, so that it becomes a core component of the UK’s infrastructure strategy going forward.’

Sadie Morgan, AA past President and co-founder of dRMM Architects, who will chair the panel, said the judges had been ‘blown away’ by the quality of the applicants: ‘It was tough choosing from over 500 fantastic entries… but in these young professionals we have a passionate and diverse group which I hope will inspire the commission with their creative ideas about the UK’s future infrastructure needs.’

Find out more about the panel’s work at https://www.nic.org.uk/publications/young-professionals-panel/

Date Submitted: 25/4/2018

AA first year studio tutor Thomas Randall-Page and former AA foundation student Benedetta Rogers have won the commission to design and build the Architecture Foundation’s 2018 Antepavilion after their proposal for a floating inflatable performance venue was selected from over 130 entries.

The contest, now in its second year, invites artists, architects, designers and makers to submit radical proposals that will turn a large disused barge – named Ouse – moored at Columbia and Brunswick Wharf on London’s Regent’s Canal into an experimental piece of architecture. The £25,000 project is supported by the AF and heritage property developer Shiva Ltd.

Jury chair and AF deputy director Phineas Harper said: ‘The jury were deeply impressed with the calibre and creativity of the finalists. Thomas Randall-Page and Benedetta Rogers’ winning design is exhilarating and joyful, drawing upon the work of Jeffrey Shaw and Ant Farm.

‘The bold and experimental nature of the team’s proposed structure and the festive programme of events they envision along the length of the Regent’s Canal make it an exciting and worthy winner of the 2018 Antepavilion Commission.’

The winning scheme allows the barge’s superstructure to deflate in order to fit through the many low bridges and tunnels that line London’s canal network then re-inflate, creating a pop-up performance space.

Commenting on their proposal, Air Draft, Thomas and Benedetta said: ‘As much as canals changed London, London’s canals have changed, from conduits of industry and cargo to arteries of art, culture and leisure. Having spent her life hauling heavy loads, Ouse is in for a treat! We plan to give her a huge cargo but of something somewhat lighter, Air.

‘This summer Ouse will once more traverse the Regent's Canal but this journey has a new purpose to champion experimentation and the arts. Air Draft will tour the grassroots venues, arts institutions and cultural hubs which dot the banks of the canal, highlighting their precious but fragile existence.’

Read more about the project at http://www.architecturefoundation.org.uk/antepavilion-2018-winner-announced

Date Submitted: 24/4/2018

On the occasion of its five-year anniversary, Federica Sofia Zambeletti was invited to Lecture at Hepia (Haute École du paysage, d’ingénierie et d’architecture de Genève) to discuss the KooZA/rch’s experience and the role of the image in contemporary architectural practice.

Founded within the stimulating environment of the AA, as a humble student-led initiative, KooZA/rch has quickly become an important digital space whose aim is to challenge and explore the role of the architectural drawing in contemporary practice. Here the drawing is not considered solely as finished product but as the means through which one shapes and develops an architectural idea and concept. At a time when images play a dominant role in contemporary society and where we don’t necessarily know how to see, the format of the interview organically emerged as a means to questions the very essence of the architectural project and the role of drawing in both the development and as final outcome.

Taking the academic institution as the epicenter of this discourse, a free space where students are able to think of architecture without the anxiety and the practicality of the built form, the platform aims to share the collective knowledge of universities and the relative units and singular projects. From how we craft architecture to how this is then perceived KooZA/rch has never been limited to the drawing in relation to the making of architecture but rather seeks to reverse the glance back at architecture through the eyes and discussions with artists, film makers, designers, photographers amongst others.

Date Submitted: 23/4/2018

Scavengers: Imagining the Near Future

The lecture will discuss their new book 'Scavengers and Other Creatures in promised Lands’ together with the latest work from their practice NaJa & deOstos. Illustrating their approach, the lecture will present in-depth research on how storytelling, collapsing environments and experimental design shape an innovative understanding of the built environment.

The lecture will take place on 20 April 2018, 18:30 at the Auditorium 3, Batiment B, Alba Dekouaneh (alba.edu.lb)

Date Submitted: 18/4/2018

Takako will be extending her research on architecture as choreography in the intimate and intricate spaces of Walmer Yard with a dancer Chisato Ohno with the idea of architecture as movement. This is her second appointment with RA, after her performative presentation at Sensing Architecture Symposium in 2014. 

The event will take place on the evening of Saturday 21st April 2018 at Walmer Yard designed by Peter Salter.

Photo: Light in Walmer Yard, photo by Takako Hasegawa

Excerpts from RA website

The RA event title Experiencing Architecture: Inviting Dialogue is both a reflection of the event’s intention and the belief that a meaningful experience of architecture is one that results in a reciprocal and evolving relationship with the spaces we inhabit.

This event comprises two parts: one an experiential encounter, the other a symposium. In the first, which takes place on a Saturday evening, a dialogue will be invited through an experience of architecture – an exchange between building, visitor, and performer. Participants will be invited to inhabit and occupy the four houses of Walmer Yard, designed by Peter Salter, while experiencing performances that experiment with the possibilities the houses offer for sound, narrative, and movement. This experience will be followed by a symposium, lasting all of the following day, at the Royal Academy. The symposium will put the night’s events into context as part of a programme of presentations and discussions.

For more details visit RA website


Date Submitted: 18/4/2018

The inaugural Bedford Square Festival took place last year and saw over 300 people attend 30 free events which took place across five institutions based on the Square – the AA, the Paul Mellon Centre, Sotheby's Institute of Art, the New College of Humanities, and Yale University Press.

In light of the success of last year’s event, the Bedford Square Festival will be returning from 4–7 July 2018. Incorporating the theme Share the Square, Bedford Square Festival 2018 will have on offer even more free events centred on art, publishing, architecture, culture, education and creativity, based around the Square and associated Institutions.

The full programme and tickets will be released on 8 May. Follow the Festival’s Twitter, Instagram and Facebook feeds for updates or sign up to mailing list to be alerted when tickets are released.

Find out more at bedfordsquarefestival.co.uk.

Date Submitted: 16/4/2018

A dog house designed by year out student Hasan Al-Rashid has been selected as part of an unusual competition promoting ‘21st century barkitecture’ and raising money for charity.

The competition run by BowWow Haus London, a collaboration between pet charity Blue Cross, American not-for-profit organisation Outdoor Arts Foundation and photographer Drew Gardner,  invited architects, designers and artists to design and build ‘one-off, unique’ kennels.

Over 75 kennels will go on show at several London venues, including St Pancras International, and will be available to buy at a charity auction or via online bids.

Alongside Hasan, big names from the world of architecture and design have taken part, including Zaha Hadid Architects, renowned mosaic artist Ivan Djidev and multi-award winning designers Denizen Works.

Reflecting on his participation in the contest, Hasan said: ‘I am thrilled to be part of this brilliant initiative and to have my design show-cased alongside celebrated artists and architects. My dog house is entirely hand crafted and I almost lost a finger in the process!’

Blue Cross director of fundraising Matt Cull said: ‘We are delighted that so many talented architects and designers have taken part and the range going on display will be very varied, from the chic and minimalist to kennels ablaze with colour.

‘Blue Cross helps thousands of pets, from hamsters up to horses, every year and we are delighted that this exciting project will also help the many pets needing our help.’

The designs are on display at St Pancras International until 26 April.

Find out more at http://www.bowwowhauslondon.co.uk/about/

Date Submitted: 21/3/2018

Architecture of Storage, a new exhibition co-curated by alumnus Lennart Wolff, a 2017 graduate of the AA’s History and Critical Thinking MA, will open on 23 March 2018 in Berlin.

The exhibition brings together artists, architects, researchers and businesses to explore freeports, data centres, self-storage facilities, and museum archives – all part of an ever growing landscape that tends to remain at the edge of users’ daily attention.

Lennart said: 'Usually unspectacular, this landscape’s functionalist architecture is inseparable from its content and requirements: security, accessibility, and flexibility.  The motives for storage are manifold: from downsizing in response to a worsening housing crisis to stowing away private high-value assets secure and tax-free.'

'The storage of information in the form of bytes – be it the warehousing of our knowledge or the marketing of our digital identities – and with it, the notion of dematerialisation increasingly shapes the general understanding of what storage is.'

The exhibition opening will feature a keynote address from Thomas Welter, Association of German Architects General Secretary, along with talks from Lennart and his co-curator Elisa R. Linn, and Deutsches Architektur Zentrum (DAZ) Artistic Director Matthias Böttger.

The exhibition runs from 24 March to 20 May 2018 at DAZ, and is open Wed–Sun, 3–8 pm.

Date Submitted: 20/3/2018

Projects Review 2018 launches with a private view on Friday 22 June, before opening to the public on Saturday 23 June. The exhibition will stay open to the public for three weeks.

Projects Review 2018 offers an overview of the AA's 2017/18 academic year. On display will be hundreds of drawings, models, installations and photographs from all the AA's units, courses and departments, documenting the diversity and experimental nature of the AA School.

At the AA architecture is pursued as a form of cultural knowledge across year-long design projects and portfolios. We believe that truly great schools don't just nurture and support architectural talent, they also build audiences for experimentation, out of which new architectural ideas, visions and projects emerge.


Exhibition opening times

Monday to Friday, 10am–7pm

Saturdays, 10am–5pm (On Saturday 23 June the exhibition will be open to the public from 1pm)


Projects Review 2018 is part of the London Festival of Architecture 2018.

Date Submitted: 15/3/2018

Xristina Argyros and Ryan Neiheiser have been selected to curate the exhibition of the Greek Pavilion in the 16th International Architecture Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia - under the general theme “Freespace,” commisioned by Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara. Entitled “The School of Athens,” the project will examine the architecture of the academic commons - from Plato’s Academy to contemporary university designs. The selection was made by The Greek Ministry of Environment and Energy and the Secretary General of Spatial Planning and Urban Design, Eirini Klampatsea. 

The curatorial duo re-imagines the Greek Pavilion as its own kind of learning “freespace,” adopting the architectural trope of the stepped landscape to create an active space of debate and exchange. Within this landscape, architectural models depicting academic common spaces from across history and around the world, both realized and unrealized, will create a field of architectural specimens that fills the pavilion in all directions. The project recognizes that common spaces within the university - unprogrammed spaces for impromptu conversation, casual gossip, heated debate, pop-up lectures, networking, and informal teaching - are vital to the institution’s continued relevance and vibrancy, and deserves intelligent critique and update. 

According to the curators, “The School of Athens is an ambition; a utopian vision of a free, open, informal, and common space for learning. It is an in-between space. Neither inside nor outside, not quite a room, but also not simply a space for circulation. Although we typically think of learning taking place in the classroom, educators and architects have recognized for thousands of years that learning also takes place in the space between; in the hallways, on the stairs, at the café, in the quad. Socrates taught in the Agora. Plato founded his Academy in the olive grove outside of Athens and often taught while walking. Medieval colleges were organized around a communal courtyard. 20th-century universities are filled with informal learning spaces often associated with circulation, and today there is a particular fascination with designing staircases, or stepped seating spaces, as the main architectural feature of an academic commons. Our ambition is to both look back, and to scan across the current landscape of university architecture, to extract compelling and successful spaces that are “free” - democratic, unprogrammed, and common.” 

The exhibition will take place from May 26th to November 25th, 2018 (Preview May 24th and 25th) in the Giardini, Venice, Italy. 

Date Submitted: 26/2/2018

Former AA tutor Madelon Vriesendorp has won the 2018 AJ/AR Ada Louise Huxtable Prize, a lifetime achievement award recognising individuals working in the wider architectural arena who have made a significant contribution to architecture and the built environment.

The Dutch artist co-founded the Office for Metropolitan Architecture with Rem Koolhaas and Elia and Zoe Zenghelis in 1972. She later expanded her practice to focus on the design of costumes, objects, illustrations, exhibitions and short stories.

In 2008 The AA hosted an exhibition and published a book dedicated to Vriesendorp’s work, and last year she was awarded an Honorary AA Diploma by outgoing School Director Brett Steele who thanked her for her ‘extraordinary contribution to the imagination of architecture’.

Paul Finch, editorial director of the AJ and the Architectural Review wrote, ‘Madelon Vriesendorp is a rarity: a true artist who has a deep understanding of architecture and its protocols, and whose observant and witty work has provided a thoughtful visual counterpoint to the world of bricks and mortar.’

The award is named after Ada Louise Huxtable, a journalist who made history for being the first full-time architecture critic at a US newspaper when she joined the New York Times, and was later awarded the first Pulitzer Prize for criticism in 1970.

Image AA Photo Library

Date Submitted: 7/2/2018

AA alumna Amanda Levete CBE (AADipl 1982) has won the 2018 AJ/AR Jane Drew Prize, an award recognising an architect who has made a significant contribution to the status of women in architecture.

After graduating from the Architectural Association, Levete worked for Richard Rogers before joining Future Systems as a partner in 1989. Working alongside her late former husband Jan Kaplický, she designed the Media Centre at Lord’s Cricket Ground, which was awarded the 1998 Stirling Prize.

In 2009 Levete founded her practice, AL_A, and has recently unveiled high-profile schemes around the world including the Central Embassy tower in Bangkok, the new Exhibition Road Quarter at the V&A Museum in London, and the impressively curvilinear, white-tiled MAAT Museum in Lisbon.

The award comes at a particularly significant time for the AA as it celebrates a centenary of women at the school in 2017/18. Levete follows several other AA women who have been awarded the Jane Drew Prize since it was re-established in 2012, including past AA President Eva Jiřičná and alumnae Kathryn Findlay (AADipl 1979), Zaha Hadid (AADipl 1977) and Denise Scott Brown (AADipl 1956).

The award is named after Jane Drew, a pioneering modernist architect who graduated from the Architectural Association in 1929.

Image courtesy AL_A by Matt Holyoaks

Date Submitted: 6/2/2018

The inaugural AA Research Publications Fellows will be Sue Barr and Clara Olóriz Sanjuán.

The Research Publications Fellowship programme is a new initiative that supports 2 fellowships per academic year. Applications are sought in December of each year. The programme is funded by grants from the AA Foundation to support research, teaching and learning at the AA, thanks to the Anthony Pott Memorial Fund and the founding companies who generously contribute to the new AA Partners Programme – HOK and KPF

Sue Barr

Sue Barr’s interdisciplinary book project, The Architecture of Transit, builds on her doctoral research, recent collaboration with the Foundation Cartier, and over 20 years of AA experience. It examines questions of architectural depiction where large-scale structures cannot be seen or experienced in their entirety and how photography is uniquely suited to document such sublime incidents. The title, to be translated in German and Italian, and published by the acclaimed photography specialist, Hartmann Books, will launch at Arles and Savignano photographic festivals as well as Photo London.

Barr noted the long phase of research leading up to publication, “I am very grateful to have been awarded the AA’s Research Publication Fellowship. Over the past seven years, this research has resulted in a series of photographs that explore architectural megastructures within the landscape in consideration of 18th century aesthetic theory.” Barr is Director of the AA’s digital photo studio.

Clara Olóriz Sanjuán

Ricardo Devesa, Editor-in-Chief of Actar Publishers in New York, wrote, “Landscape as Territory: A Cartographic Design Project, a publication project by the AALU Programme, and led by Clara Olóriz Sanjuán, as a research and design investigation into novel forms of territorial praxis at regional, national and transnational scales, is seen by Actar as an extremely relevant contribution to contemporary forms of current landscape, urban and architectural discourses.” The project reflects on 5 years of research and teaching, a string of international lectures, and the work of AA colleagues, students, and alumni. Olóriz Sanjuán is AALU design tutor and co-director of the AA Visiting School in Bilbao.

Olóriz Sanjuán said, “This publication presents an opportunity to critically look at the last developments of the AALU programme and foresee potential futures. From my own perspective, it brings closer several personal strands of work: theory and praxis as well as academic and professional research projects. It will collect various forms of academic research to generate ways of thinking alternative methods of policy making and territorial practices relevant to contemporary forms of urbanisation.”

Date Submitted: 6/2/2018


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