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AA revisited

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Book launches can be gloomy or jolly. ABK's, held at the AA last week, was jolly, with plenty of familiar faces. I chatted to Richard Paxton and Heidi Locher, John Worthington, Rab Bennetts and many others too numerous to mention.

Ahrends, Burton and Koralek were on cheery form and food and drink flowed lavishly. The book marks the 50th anniversary of their time at the AA - and they are still talking to each other. Best comment in the book is by Jeremy Melvin, who notes that their buildings represent the portal, not the terminal.

Contributor Paul Finch, who with Mohsen Mostafavi spoke at the event, tells me he is baffled by a review of the book by Tom Muirhead, which, while very favourable, suggests Finch thinks unpredictabilty is a problem for ABK, and that commercialism is more important than creativity. In fact, his text says the work is unpredictable 'in its most constructive and positive sense', and he applauds the survival of the practice's values over 40 years.

I hope these two old muckers are not about to fall out.

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