GUEST EDITORS

Every month architects and industry insiders share their recommendations for the best exhibitions and events to visit in London.

April 2013
Gabrielle Omar
Architect and founder 'Tea with an Architect'
And so we begin the month of April... A month filled with hopefully the first hint of sunshine which we have lacked so terribly in recent months, as well as celebrations of Easter and new beginnings. It should also be pointed out that this is the month of the permissible over indulgence of chocolate eggs as an added booster to launch us into what will hopefully be a hot summer ahead. With talks of new beginnings and changes, the architectural world seems to be following suit. The RIBA continues its series of events on 'Ideas to Change British Architecture', which runs until the 27th April. Inspired by the Venice Takeaway exhibition which I was lucky enough to go and see in last year's Venice Biennale, the exhibition held at Portland place explores the inspirations, research and answers of ten groups discoveries from their world travels. Staying with the RIBA and talks of what the future may hold, the 16th April brings forth a discussion hosted by Kevin McCloud, the Observer's architecture critic Rowan Moore, City of London chief planning officer Peter Rees, author/journalist Simon Jenkins and architect Julia Barfield. The topic... Are Tall Buildings Blighting our Skyline? New structures have the power to enthrall, but they can also alter the character of the city forever. Therefore can creation lead to an era of demise and darkness rather than a brighter future... Well I'll let you debate that point, otherwise I will be here all day! For those who may not want to dwell solely at Portland Place for the whole month ahead, then the Royal Academy of Arts continues to run its exhibition 'Same old, same old'. Veering not to far away from the theme of fresh starts, this exhibition has sought to look at the Architecture Space in a 'new light, offering a multi-sensory experience of a space heavy with history'. The NLA is also the place to be when it comes to showcases that look to celebrate architecture in forms that enthuse and intrigue the viewer. Field Explorations is a new exhibition that, as expected at the NLA, does not disappoint. The hand drawings by the students of the Syracuse University School of Architecture (New York) offer broad overviews of architecture, art and urbanism in London through visions and techniques that are worth standing still for (which in London is something rarely done). If you however are someone who does not enjoy the ideas of change, and likes to revel in the triumphs of the past, then it is worth noting that on the 22nd April is the birthday of James Stirling. Thought to be one of the most important and influential architects of the second half of the 20th century by critics and architects alike. He is also the namesake for the Stirling Prize, which if you did not know is a British annual prize for architecture, and thus deserves a raised glass and a trip to Tate Britain where he had designed the Clore Galleries in 1987.
Past Editors