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Boxed in

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Channel 4 tried to make out that its Stirling Prize coverage was live when it was broadcast last Sunday evening. This seemed bizarre when the result was published in the Sunday Times that morning, but that's television for you. The BBC studiously ignored the result, perhaps because it really did think the event was on Sunday. Given that the channel had a reasonable length of time to edit the programme, it was disappointingly disjointed.

Strangest of all, especially given the presence of the five judges round a table where cameras were present, no explanation was given as to why Alsop & Stormer's Peckham Library was chosen as the winner. We had seen tiny sound bites from judges on their visits, though not all buildings were deemed worthy of comment from all of them. You might have assumed from the interviews that Canary Wharf would have emerged as the winner, and that Peckham would be ruled out for being messy at the edges. There was surprisingly little time given to Walsall Art Gallery by Caruso St John, though Tracey Emin's comments were interesting and well considered (she liked it). So why did three of the panel opt for Alsop? Perhaps we will never know, but if there is no proper explanation, what is the point in hyping the judging process on television? More time was given to debating the meaningless question of whether Sainsbury's at Greenwich was architecture or just supermarket architecture - the only thing we wanted to know was what the judges really thought about Peckham and its closest rivals. Now all is just speculation.

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