Alan Dunlop's Comments
......I can remember your beautiful pen drawings and a meticulous drafting skill, Rachel. All the best.
I defer to few people in my appreciation of Mackintosh and have written frequently and spoken on the BBC about his genius. The true worth of the Mac building and example of Mackintosh's profound talent is that it is still a working art school, over one hundred years since its completion, with the exception of the library. That was a museum space. However, you had the knowledge that Mackintosh once stood in that space, talked with the craftsmen, developed the design, you were always very much aware of his presence. That connection is now lost and cannot be replaced, no matter how good the replication. It is a shortlist that avoids controversy and for me disappointing that there is not one "wildcard" on the list, like Mackintosh himself was in the 1890's. However, most of all I find it ironic that such an esteemed institution like the Glasgow School of Art, that prides itself in innovation in art and makes such a play of having four winners of the Turner prize should now play it so safe. Who could do it? I can think of a few and have faith in my profession that we could rise to this challenge and could produce a new library that can meet modern requirements and it can still be beautiful, inspirational and well considered.
Very safe shortlist.
I'm happy you're content Jim. True, I have not attended a convention since 2004 and it will probably be another ten years before I attend another. Yet I 'd be interested if you could suggest another architect who has written more positively about architects and architecture in Scotland in recent years. I'm up to my neck in CPD. However, I have read the 2011 document and as far as I can detect the publication has had absolutely no influence on the Scottish Government or public procurement in Scotland: Small and medium sized practices still are still restricted or barred entry; Design quality of new buildings and fitness for purpose has not significantly improved, The Scottish Futures Trust or "Hub"s are driven by bottom line economics not design quality ; We are no clearer on the expertise of those judging PQQ's or those involved in the final tender selection of public sector procurement process. However,as the profession is dogged by a lack of respect, which has resulting in low fees and long hours, the Presidents call for pricing, reliability and value for money in the process seems to have had an effect but not in the way anticipated, I suspect.
Great project that has lifted a whole area of Glasgow's saltmarket and reinvigorated an important site that has been bordered by rotting timber panelling and derelict for years. It has transformed the space between London Road and Gallowgate from an area filled with rubbish, rubble and abandoned syringes to a space used by local residents, office workers and joggers. The change in gradient from Gallowgate to London Road has been expertly handled, with the incorporation of gabions, retaining walls and bench seating. There are also quirky elements, not fully noticeable at first, like the rainbow pathway that includes the names of the 2000 or so bands that have played at the nearby Barrowlands and a blue Dr Who police box which is sure to delight local kids.
" between 1950 and 1970 no European country invested less in social housing." Very interesting, what's the source/reference?
"Intricately woven....a virtuoso performance, highest standards of place-making " really?
Comment on: Search begins for architect to restore the Mac
I too have just visited the building, David. You make a valid point about the rain. Seeing how the weather will affect the brick facades over time will be interesting but I disagree strongly that the building is "ill resolved". In my view, it's a truly remarkable and original work carried out with rigour on a very difficult site, whether it wins the Stirling or not. I hope it wins but despite the "hype" it may not. How often has the clear Stirling favourite lost out? Anyway, Rory Olcayto's comment seems particularly relevant to your post "James Stirling’s portfolio is practically defined by risk - every one of his great buildings flirts vigorously with failure."
Comment on: Amanda Levete: the social networker
I am genuinely puzzled how a practice with few built projects and limited profit before tax can run an office of 55 people?