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Architects - still nigh on invisible to the public

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I guess I'm getting old when I can't make out the drawings in an AJ, but perhaps you could explain the relevance of the lovely wallpaper-repeat image (AJ 24.10.02, page 5) captioned by such praise for Hopkins' Bury Cattle Market scheme? Wondering if it was a spot-the-difference quiz or just empty space to fill, I turned the page.

After minutes scratching my head trying to make spatial sense of the drawings of Alec French's Brislington Learning Centre (page 6), I finally concluded that either the section must be published (and lettered up) in reverse, or urinals are hung facing the wall, and the stair is simply wrongly drawn.

Did I get that one teaser right?

At least life is easier when I reach your leader being adequately caustic on the absurd Great Britons. The invisibility of architects in public life is also amusingly reflected in a thick new almanac, The A to Z of almost Everything, which I saw today by chance. It's not only the Stirling Prize which omits mention of Big Jim. Here, the list of 'Famous Architects' - 35 of them, omitting Palladio and Michelangelo, including Bramante and Inigo Jones - has Spence but no Stirling. But while there's Aalto and Mies, there's no Corbusier either, so it's good company. Its largely British list includes 'Lord Foster of Thames Bank and Lord Rogers of Riverside, whose latest listed works are HKSB and Lloyd's, circa 1986'; the book's publication date 2002. There's still a bit to go in popular consciousness.

John McKean, via e-mail

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