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'We will no longer tolerate an assumption too widely held across the arts in the past - that artistic excellence is somehow a substitute for proper management or that sound financing is somehow too vulgar to be a concern . . . In the new era, no one should kid themselves that the Arts Council will be a soft touch.' Arts Council chairman Gerry Robinson. Guardian, 15.10.98

'In any company there are only 12 important decisions a year - you can delegate the rest. The same is true of life. In fact there are probably fewer than 12 in a whole life.' Gerry Robinson. IoS, 18.10.98

'It's very hard to let the problems of the Royal Opera House keep you awake at night when you've spent the day digging the garden.' Gerry Robinson. Ibid.

'The perfect New Establishment home is a flat in a former local authority block designed by Lubetkin. Your neighbours will be wonderfully real, and you may revel for a time in their strange cooking smells and exhilarating marital discord, secure in the knowledge that inexorable gentrification will ensure that they are shortly replaced with all your friends.' Lydia Slater of Harpers & Queen. Times, 14.10.98

'We were due to look at the work being carried out on the building, but unfortunately it collapsed just before we went to see it. We have now issued a dangerous structures notice . . .' A Westminster council spokeswoman after 'ashen-faced' builders renovating a London house saw it suddenly fall down. Evening Standard, 13.10.98

'Other modern architects treat modernity as a medicine that has to be taken for the good of your health, but for Hadid it is more like a hallucinogenic drug. For her, architecture is an art form with the power to open up the imagination - similar to film, literature or painting - and make tangible the previously inconceivable. . .Unfortunately for her, most potential clients seem to prefer architectural easy listening.'

Rowan Moore on Zaha Hadid. Evening Standard, 13.10.98

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