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Betts Project (an East London Gallery founded by AA Member Marie Coulon) is delighted to present an exhibition of renowned Swiss architect Peter Märkli, alongside relief-sketches by the sculptor Hans Josephsohn. This will be the artist’s second solo exhibition at the gallery, showing works –from his famous ‘Language drawings’ to 3D drawings and models– that are related to selected projects.

The sketch is the germ of an idea, with no detail in it. The sketch has to be kept small, otherwise you’d have to flesh out certain details. It’s like a writer coming up with an idea for a novel. He might be clear that there will be three main characters, but he doesn’t yet know how the plot will unfold. Every time you have a motif, an idea, and you need a lot of drawings to work through it to the end. You might do ten and look and suddenly realise that you know enough at that moment, and the thing is finished.But then you might come back to that series much later. It’s perfectly possible. Twenty years after I did this series of facades made up of squares – different squares, not regular ones – I built a house using the same motif. The building and the situation and the landscape all needed this facade. If I make these drawings they are more or less two-dimensional, and the question is how to do a facade and the elements on the facade. Out of all these hundreds of drawings, I think only a small number are directly connected with a project.

When I was studying at the ETH I used to go and visit Hans Josephsohn in his atelier. I was also assisting him for a while, constructing rough frameworks and things like that. For me, it became quite normal to work with sculpture, so suddenly I was able to see the possibility of making the join between the column and the horizontal in a different way from Olgiati. I saw I could extend the column up to the horizontalelement and place a relief at the point where they met. That was very important for me. And so a lot of my sketches have pieces by Josephsohn in them. We’ve talked about how a sketch might start but I should add that I never know whether or not a piece has come to an end. It might produce some result. It might be the most I can possibly do at a particular time or for a particular project, but perhaps it’s not completely done. And I can’t say exactly why.

—Peter Märkli

preview: Saturday 11 March, 6—8pm
exhibition: 15 March —22 April 2017

Betts Project
100 Central Street
London EC1V 8AJ

Date Submitted: 26/3/2017

AA Alumnus Lawrence Lek (AADipl 2008), recipient of the 2017 Jerwood/FVU Award, is premiering a newly commissioned film, Geomancer, as part of the awards’ exhibition at the Jerwood Space in London.

Responding to the curatorial theme, Neither One Thing or Another, Lek employs pioneering, conceptually fitting, technologies to examine the steadily blurring line between the real and the artificial. Lek harnesses his trademark - the building blocks of computer gaming technology - to set the stage for an awakening of artificial intelligence above Singapore on the eve of the city-state’s centennial celebrations in 2065. Part philosophical reflection on where ‘genius’ resides, part playful inventory of how science fiction has dealt with eternal human/automaton themes, Geomancer is provocative stimulation for both the eye and the mind.

Since his selection in May 2016, Lek has received £20,000 to develop the work, with full production support from FVU. Following its debut at Jerwood Space, the film will tour as a series of screening events nationwide.

The exhibition runs from 22 March to 14 May 2017. Find out more here

Image: Lawrence Lek

Date Submitted: 24/3/2017

The A+Awards celebrates and honors the best in architecture and design.

The AA Summer DLAB is an architectural programme directed by Dr.Elif Erdine and Alexandros Kallegias. The programme experiments with the integration of algorithmic / generative design methodologies and large scale digital fabrication tools.

Weave.X is the final working prototype designed, developed, and fabricated in AA’s London home and Hooke Park facilities during 25 July – 12 August 2016. 21 participants from 11 countries participated in the programme in order to investigate themes of generative design, material computation, and robotic fabrication technologies within the agency of concrete and robotic rod-bending protocols. 

The ongoing research intends to incorporate simple mechanical tools and cost-effective fabrication methods with the complexity embedded in generative form-finding processes, geometrical rationalization, and robotic tool-path creation that integrates material constraints. The key objective is to illustrate the architectural possibilities of using concrete in a non-conventional way by creating strong associations between computational design methodologies and robotic fabrication processes.  Summer DLAB is running again in summer2017.

To vote please visit Voting closes Friday, March 31st

For more information please visit: and

Date Submitted: 23/3/2017

AA alumna Amanda Levete (AADipl RIBA) has appeared on BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs as Kirsty Young's latest castaway, discussing her architectural career and latest projects at AL_A, the award-winning design and architecture studio she founded in 2009, whilst choosing the eight records she'd take with her were she stranded on a desert island.

After graduating from the Architectural Association, Levete worked for Richard Rogers before joining Future Systems as a partner in 1989. Whilst there she designed the Media Centre at Lord's Cricket Ground with her then husband, the late Jan Kaplicky, winning the 1998 Stirling Prize.

AL_A’s recent commissions include the highly anticipated expansion of the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, the Galeries Lafayette Haussmann remodelling in Paris, a luxury shopping mall and hotel in Bangkok on the former grounds of the British Embassy, a new centre for the cancer care charity Maggie’s in Southampton, and the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon.

Download and listen to the episode here:

Image: Seriousarchfan,

Date Submitted: 20/3/2017

The lecture titled “Concrete Complexity: Transcribing Design Intelligence in the Fabrication Methods” presents the work completed during the ORANGE cycle of the AA Summer DLAB programme during summer 2017.

The photo shows a view of the final concrete prototype Weave.X that is part of the ongoing research of the programme in regards to the use of robotics in relation to novel manufacturing techniques, materiality and computational design. Weave.X has also been nominated finalist in the Architizer A+Awards. For more information on the research programme please visit:

This lecture event is set as a PechaKucha style presentations providing a platform for young architects to learn, communicate and engage with other fellow professionals on matters of architecture in the Digital Age and the Emerging Technologies. The venue is at Tyneside Cinema, 10 Pilgrim Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 6QG.

For more information on the event please see:

Image credit: Elif Erdine

Date Submitted: 20/3/2017

Public works, a critical design practice set up in 2004 by a group including AA alumni and former tutors Andreas Lang (AADipl 1999), Kathrin Böhm, Torange Khonsari (AADipl 1998) and Sandra Denicke Polcher (AADipl 1998), is co-hosting The Art of Being Civic, a two-day symposium at Tate Modern from 6-7 April 2017.   

Under the title of The Civic University, public works is exploring situated modes of education, both as a critique of existing university models, and as a new model where knowledges are produced by and disseminated to the civil society.

Bringing together activists, artists, academics and architects, the symposium will address how knowledge can play a role in civic activism claiming rights over the city, and act as a critical platform for action. The first day will explore the role of civil society in relation to contemporary city making, while the second day will focus on pedagogy and education, understanding how and by whom knowledge is produced, who sanctions it and how it is distributed and accumulated.

The Civic University is an ongoing collaboration with AA Alumnus and Council Member Professor Robert Mull (AADipl 1983) and his initiative Global Practice Programme.

Read more and book here.

Image: public works,

Date Submitted: 20/3/2017

Intermediate Unit 8 tutors Francisco Gonzalez de Canales and Nuria Alvarez Lombardero's project Perea Borobio House has been shortlisted in the Architectural Journal Small projects competition after being selected from more than 200 entries.

The project design in their London-Seville based office Canales-Lombardero will compete for the main prize on Wednesday 29 March in a public presentation at the Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, where the project will be exhibited until April 26 2017. This exhibition will be simultaneously open in Bristol. 

The competition publication has selected a picture from the interior of the house as the cover image, exposing Canales-Lombardero work on materiality and unexpected spatial connections. 

Also nominated is Kate Darby (AADipl 1997), Studio Tutor on the AA's Design and Make MArch in Hooke Park, for Croft Lodge Studio, a project centred around a 17th-century Herefordshire cottage and stables.

Other nominees include AA Alumnus and former tutor Gianni Botsford (AADipl 1996), and AA Alumni Edmund Fowles (AADipl(Hons) 2009) of Feilden Fowles and Catherine Finkernagel (AADipl 2000) of Finkernagel Ross. 

For more information, please see 

Image: Fernando Alda

Date Submitted: 9/3/2017

February 28 2017
6.00 - 9.00pm

For one special evening the Florence Hall in the RIBA will host Catherine Yass’ latest work ‘Aeolian Piano’. Yass, who was nominated for the Turner Prize in 2002, works primarily with film and photography.

She describes her films as temporal drawings, often capturing architectural sites from unusual vantage points. In 2002 her film ‘Flight’ documented BBC Broadcasting House from a remote-controlled helicopter and she has also filmed locations such as building sites at Canary Wharf in her film ‘Descent’ (2002) by lowering a camera upside down through the morning mist. ‘Aeolian Piano’ was developed with architectural producer Francesca Hughes. 

Alongside the screening in the Florence Hall, a selection of RIBA and BBC archive collection photographs will be on display showing the BBC Television Centre in construction and later in use by BBC staff. A panel discussion between Catherine Yass; Robert Seatter, Head of BBC History; Francesca Hughes, partner of Hughes Meyer Studio and author; and Alice Cicolini, White Noise will take place in the space opposite the Florence Hall. The discussion will be chaired by architect and academic, Mark Campbell.

Standard: £9.50
Students: £6.50

To book tickets for this event please visit the RIBA website:

Date Submitted: 24/2/2017

Former AA student, Leila Meroue (AADipl 2012), has set up the charity Let's Build My School in Africa. The charity is run by a group of architects in order to build schools and extra classrooms in remote villages in developing countries.  They use locally-sourced and where possible, recycled materials, such as tyres and sandbags. Let's Build My School acts as a laboratory of research constantly looking for innovative and eco-friendly techniques of construction.

The first project they will be working on is building two additional classrooms in Thies, Senegal, in the school Bassirou Mbacké. The construction will start in May 2017 where they will be working alongside the local community, exchanging skills and knowledge.

There will be a number of cultural events in London in order to collect funds for the projects. In order to help support Let’s Build My School's first project please visit where you can find out more information and learn about how you can volunteer and donate. 

Date Submitted: 22/2/2017

With this pledge, the planned Museum of London has achieved three-quarters of its £250 million cost.

The museum will relocate from London Wall to a 25,000 square metre site at at the Farringdon Road end of West Smithfield, due to open in 2022. The new site comprises the vacant Smithfield General Market, the vacant Fish Market, the Red House, Iron Mountain and the Engine House. The intention is to double the annual number of visitors to two million with 8000 square metres of permanent gallery space and 1500 square metres of temporary space.

Stanton Williams and Asif Khan are working with conservation architect Julian Harrap and landscape design consultants J&L Gibbons on the scheme.

Earlier projects by Asif Khan, who also teaches at the Royal College of Art, include the Coca-Cola Beatbox pavilion in the 2012 Olympic Park, London and the West Beach cafe at Littlehampton in Sussex (2008).

Image from AJ:

Date Submitted: 25/1/2017

Georgios Eftaxiopoulos and Álvaro Velasco Pérez curated the exhibition at the UNAV School of Architecture, Navarra, Spain. The exhibition will be open from 20 January–20 February 2017.

Date Submitted: 25/1/2017

Southbank Centre’s Hayward Touring programme has announced British artist and AA diploma tutor John Walter as the winner of the 2017 Curatorial Open – its yearly call for proposals for an exhibition of contemporary art aiming to nurture new and diverse curatorial talent and expand the parameters of the contemporary curatorial landscape. 

Walter was selected from an open submission of 125 proposals for Hayward Touring’s fourth Curatorial Open exhibition with his proposal Shonky: The Aesthetics of Awkwardness, a group exhibition that will bring together international artists and architects to explore the nature of visual awkwardness. Shonky is a slang term meaning corrupt or bent, shoddy or unreliable, that stands here for the hand-made, deliberately clumsy and amateurish – against the slick production values of much contemporary art.

Shonky will open at the MAC, Belfast on 20 October 2017 before touring to Dundee Contemporary Arts, the Bury Art Museum & Sculpture Centre and one further venue, to be confirmed. 

Artist John Walter said: 
'Shonky  will create a new discursive space for ideas around visual awkwardness, exploring the role that the hand plays in artworks made in a range of media, including video, painting and sculpture, and the importance of authorship in communicating with audiences about identity politics. The exhibition will draw together artists and architects whose work has not previously been exhibited together or discussed within the same  context, to allow for new ways  of thinking to emerge that privilege ‘shonkiness’ over other aesthetic forms  that have dominated recent visual culture.'

Date Submitted: 18/1/2017


Betts Project is pleased to present Diorama, an exhibition of British architects Caruso St John.

‘The models, and the photographs of the models are a way of getting closer and closer to an image that is already in our minds, it is about articulating all of the qualities in that image. I like the fact that in a competition one can try to communicate the concept and the atmosphere of a project in one or two such images. I would say that the preoccupation in the office is not the production of models, but of finding the image of a project.’ Adam Caruso, OASE 84 (2011).

The exhibition presents a selection of models for competitions as well as the model of their recent Stirling Prize winner project, the Newport Street Gallery. The 1:50 models in pastel colours belong to buildings the architects worked on during the last few years. Their focus lies on the exterior: The façades are flat, windows and doors are marked by coloured surfaces. Because of these details, the models have a strong pictorial quality, while at the same time their spatial dimension is underlined by thick layers of paint. Exhibited together on a large table, the models show a kind of imaginary Caruso St John-city. In Adam Caruso’s words: ‘The buildings that are represented in the models are very different, but we have used only five colours to represent all of their details. This serves to bring together their diverse forms and scales.’

The photographs on the wall offer insights into the interior of models Caruso St John have been making for the last 25 years. Thus they remind of the dioramas of the 19th century, three-dimensional models that show a situation in a way that looks real. Adam Caruso describes the nature of the model photographs as follows: 'They show a world where the atmosphere of our buildings are explicitly evoked at the same time as being uncanny as to the actual size and material of the models, models that have been only made to produce these images.'

Date Submitted: 18/1/2017

What is lighting or illumination to you? RIBA Hong Kong (the Royal Institute of British Architects), Megaman HK and Merci Magazine joined together to explore the potential of lighting design with the Tree of Light design competition.

For more details, please contact Merci Magazine

See more at:

Date Submitted: 9/1/2017

Christine Hawley completed her AA Dipl in 1975 and later taught at the AA from 1979 to 1987. The biennial award recognises individuals who have made a significant contribution to the ‘advancement of architectural education’ in schools of architecture with courses validated by the RIBA.

For more information please click here

Date Submitted: 13/12/2016


The AA School in realtime



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The Architectural Association receives Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Lords of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.

The Architectural Association (AA), the oldest independent school of architecture in the United Kingdom, is pleased to announce that it has been granted the power to award its own degrees. As of 1 October 2019, the AA has the right to establish new academic programmes and degree awards and is working to create some of the world’s most pioneering courses in architecture to shape and build the future.

Taught Degree Awarding Powers (TDAP) give UK higher education institutions the right to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prospective students worldwide can apply to the AA Foundation Course (Foundation Diploma), Experimental Programme BA(Hons), Diploma Programme (MArch), and nine taught postgraduate programmes encompassing History and Critical Thinking in Architecture (MA), Projective Cities (Taught MPhil) and Sustainable Environmental Design (MSc/MArch), amongst others.

AA Director, Eva Franch said, ‘since our founding in 1847 we have never ceased to create new horizons, institutionally and academically. This is a significant milestone for the AA and demonstrates how we have grown and progressed as an institution that has always valued independence. Receiving TDAP marks a new era for our institution; these are exciting times for the AA. The process has required considerable work from all members of staff and students. I would like to take this opportunity to credit them for this major achievement’.

President of the AA Council, Victoria Thornton added, ‘the TDAP process has recognised our strong governance, academic standards, scholarship and teaching as well as the environment supporting the delivery of taught higher education programmes’.

The School’s application for Taught Degree Awarding Powers was supported by the Architects Registration Board, the Royal Institute of British Architects and The Open University.