Co Founding Director of Duggan Morris Architects
Comment on: Stirling Prize shortlist: the critics react
I agree with Ellis ;-) / :-((
This is a sublime and sophisticated piece of work, within a sector continually devoid of charged intellect or narrative. It has reduced the banality of corporate office building design into a hugely efficient diagram of free spanning naturally ventilated spaces with stunning views across the southern stretch of the KX site; and all without the plastic gimmicks usually employed to mask or conceal a building's bulk or mass. Concurrently, Ellis Woodman's critique is head and shoulders above anything we read in the architectural press. A real coup for the AJ.
Comment on: Women architects paid a quarter less than men
Which practices, and are we taking about a straight position for position comparison? If the statistics suggest blatant discrimination, name and shame each practice individually including the directors who set out such a policy. I know of no practices within my network which deploy inequality. Our office, for example, employs a strict grade system, with absolutely no distinction between age, gender, race...simply experience and qualifications. I'd be interested to see what responses are encouraged if this course of action is pursued.
I reside on several design review panels across London Boroughs, and in some cases, the panellists are required to review schemes (some controversial/some small) by inclusion of wall mounted drawings and a presentation by the planning officer, minus Architect or Applicant. In these cases, the D&A forms an invaluable narrative and explanation for decision making both wrong and right. Invariably, a well formatted D&A reads true and reflects highly upon the application and design team to deliver quality, and in many cases this reassurance is important to local authorities. The current system is not infallible, and many abuse the format as a means to entice the poorly trained and the lay into thinking the scheme is delivering more than it can. The D&A is also often an excessive drain on resource and time. However, if programmed into the design development correctly and used as a record of progress, recycled regularly, it should not be a burden. Instead, a useful reference mechanism for the team, client and stakeholders. My view remains that the D&A is a useful and necessary tool. It provides an important reference tool for both local authorities and the wider community, and instils a degree of referential rigour allowing those reviewing, insight into chronic deficiencies within applications. A sense of proportion is all that is required however, and this isn't just a matter of scale, it is a matter of complexity.
Hm...tricky. Who do I think will be on short list and who I want to be on the shortlist. First things first, Shortlist will be something along the lines of; Hopkins-Velodrome (winner) Nouvel/Sidell Gibson-One New Change SHL-City of Wesminster College Caruso St John-Chiswick House Bennetts Associates-Royal Skakespear and Swan Theatre AHMM-Angel Building Now, who do I want on the list; O'Donnell & Tuomey-An Gaelaras Sarah Wigglesworth-Sandal Magna School Hopkins-Velodrome (winner) AHMM-Velodrome Burns-Passmore Apollo Pavilion And dare I say it Seven Oaks School of Performing Arts by Tim Ronalds.