Reinier de Graaf

The Complex Nature of a Simple Profession

Series: Evening Lecture
Date: Thursday 19 January 2017
Time: 18:30
Venue: Lecture Hall
Running time: 80 mins

Architecture is often viewed as an elevated art form. This talk marks a departure: not about works of architecture, but about working as an architect. Larger reflections on the notion of architecture interspersed with tragicomic anecdotes from the ‘field’ serve to debunk successive misconceptions looming over our profession, including that of ‘success’ itself. Serving the same powers it strives to critique, architecture is condemned to a perpetual conflict of interest, embroiled in a world of which it is forever unclear who drives it and in which success seems impossible to define – a candid account of architecture in the 21st Century.

Reinier de Graaf is a partner at the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA), where he heads the work of its think tank AMO, leading various projects to demonstrate the wider relevance of architectural thinking beyond building. De Graaf is currently working on his forthcoming book: ‘Four Walls and a Roof’.

Image: Photograph by Adrienne Norman, Courtesy of OMA

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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.