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Five of the best… essays by Joseph Rykwert

The AJ has launched its annual search for architectural writing talent. Here, we take a look at five of the best pieces penned for the AJ by Writing Prize judge Joseph Rykwert

Rykwert will be judging this year’s AJ Writing Prize, alongside AJ editor Christine Murray, Edwin Heathcote, architecture and design critic of The Financial Times and Alan Berman of Writing Prize sponsor Berman Guedes Stretton.

The architectural historian and critic began writing ‘out of irritation with what seemed to me wrong-headed views’. He said: ‘Good architectural writing comes from sensing that putting words together is like putting stuff together to make a building, so your piece becomes an analogue of a building’.

The AJ, with Writing Prize sponsor Berman Guedes Stretton, has once again begun its annual search for the best new architectural writer with £1,000 in prize money up for grabs.

Information on how to enter the AJ Writing Prize can be found, here.

Reminiscences of Duchamp

Duchamp Fountain, 1950Duchamp Fountain, 1950
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Rykwert recalls Marcel Duchamp, whose work and influence was celebrated in a major exhibition at the Barbican earlier this year.

Quiet intervention

Astley Castle by Witherford Watson Mann ArchitectsAstley Castle by Witherford Watson Mann Architects
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Rykwert on the Stirling Prize-nominated Astley Castle by Witherford Watson Mann.

Bauhaus at the Barbican


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In this, one of AJ art editor Brad Yendle’s favourite Rykwert pieces, Rykwert remembers the fun and frolics of the Dessau school.

The Angel Building by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris

Angel Building, AHMMThe Angel Building by AHMM
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In AJ technical editor Felix Mara’s chosen piece, Rykwert takes a look at AHMM’s 2011 Stirling Prize-shortlisted Angel Building.

Art house: Louvre-Lens by SANAA

Louvre-Lens SANAALouvre-Lens by SANAA
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Rykwert looks at the concept behind the Louvre’s latest offshoot.


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