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Q & A - Peter Barber Peter Barber Architects

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When and where were you born?

1960, Guildford.

What are your favourite buildings and why?

Borromini's San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane - it has a weird and bizarre exterior, with taut plastic forms inside; proto-plasticism. Everybody should go and see it. Also, San Miniato al Monte in Florence has good carving; Koolhaas' Kunsthal and Miralles' cemetery are thoughtprovoking; and Le Corbusier's Villa Savoye makes you want to dance about? well, it does me anyway.

What is your favourite restaurant/meal?

Pollo Bar, Old Compton Street, London.

What vehicle(s) do you own?

Two pushbikes and a beat-up Rover.

What are your favourite films?

Charles Laughton's Night of the Hunter and Tarkovsky's Stalker.

What is your favourite book?

All That is Solid Melts in Air by Marshall Berman.

What is your favourite 'design classic'?

Paper Mate 'non-stop' plastic disposable propelling pencils with integral eraser. A thousand times more versatile than any computer and only 25p each.

What is the worst building you've ever seen and why?

Don't get me started.

Who or what is your biggest architectural influence and why?

Koolhaas - cerebral; Miralles - sensual; Le Corbusier - social; and Borromini - for all of the above.

Who is the most talented architect you've worked with?

Ben Stringer.

If you hadn't been an architect, what would you have been?

A film director.

What would your advice be to architectural students?

Ignore the ARB/RIBA's learning outcomes - get on with making beautiful projects.

What would your motto be?

Don't panic.

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