Tuesday, 29 September 2009

The RA

Graham Boyce spoke to A-Level students about studying architecture in one of the Royal Academy galleries this afternoon. Part of attRAct's mentoring programme. Boyce relayed the process involved with Watermark Place, the development on the site of the redundant international telephone exchange by Cannon Street station. Students had the look of decisions and form-filling if that is at all possible.
*Anish Kapoor's courtyard sculpture Tall Tree and the Eye and solo exhibition in the galleries until 11 December.

Friday, 25 September 2009

Preparing for moving day

K's tomato red filing cabinet and paper mache 'objet d'art' no longer live at Flat 3. I forgot how we all move in stages, gradually putting books in boxes before carting and lugging and tripping over SO much stuff and things. But before you know it everything and the toaster is in their new home.

Me: An end of an era
K: This era had many sub-eras.


Thursday, 24 September 2009

Have to admit

I fell into a water feature. Got my feet wet at More London. I was looking up. People always say look up at London's architecture. Maybe they don't say, ask Mike who you work with about the Ernst & Young building cladding and then plunge your ballet slippers into a bath.

Hours can be dwindled

Preempting tomorrow's lunch at Kiwi-run cafe Lantana on Charlotte Place, Fitzrovia.

Hampstead's Ginger and White. A British Coffee shop. Union Jack cushions and "We don't do Grande" on their front door.

Might not be the week to give up coffee. I'll take up Lantana's Hummingbird cakes instead.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Conversations with the Builder

Me: Could you come up with a costing for the flat. Electrics. Plumbing. We want to gut it all
Builder: You have to tell me what you want
Mum: We want to gut the flat
Builder: Yes but what do you want to put in afterwards
Me: A fridge. Washing machine. Electrical sockets with silver covers. No gold taps.
Builder: Silver covers will cost you
Mum: Well we need a costing so we know what to rule out and what is necessary.
Builder: Well you have to tell me what you want
Me: Silver electrical cover sockets

Flat 3 renovation journey begins

(image via)


Last night's RIBA London Life drawing class took place at the Design Musuem amongst their current exhibition: a UK retrospective of self taught Spanish designer and artist Javier Mariscal. You may recall Mariscal's character that became the Barcelona 1992 Olympics mascot. I remember it on a key chain.

Exhibition blog.
A chocolate sundae of an exhibition. Lots of fun.

Tuesday, 22 September 2009


(image via )

Our environment

UN Climate summit Live


Ace Hotels, lower budget and pitch perfect design. Set in the desert, this Palm Springs hotel has been renovated from a 1965 Howard Johnson motor Lodge. As someone who spent a few weeks of every year growing up in the Florida sunshine, I am still drawn to Denny's and highways.
(An Americana daydream Tuesday)

Book Club

I need to read the first 70 pages of Gravity's Rainbow for the first meet up this Sunday. Excerpt from Wikipedia: "the three-member Pulitzer Prize jury on fiction supported Gravity's Rainbow for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1974. However, the other eleven members of the board overturned this decision, branding the book unreadable, turgid, overwritten".

Going to hop, skip, jump to Daunt to locate a turgid copy now!

Portabello Dock

Tom Dixon's new base in Portobello Dock, Ladbroke Grove is hosting an exhibition of emerging designers as part of London Design Festival. The Dock show runs from 20-27th September and includes Studio toogood's collaboration with formica to create 'the hatch' and Beachball lamps from TobyHouse

The London Festival of Architecture 2010 launch party was held at The Dock last night. Peter Murray, Chair of the LFA gave his speech with a megaphone. I can categorically say that all guests could hear the plan for next year's festival Loud and Clear. Getting excited now.

Monday, 21 September 2009

Clerkenwell Tales

New bookshop on Exmouth Market. Owner Peter Ho was chipper following the response from enthusiastic locals when I met him a few weeks ago. In celebration of independent booksellers.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Blue Fence Project

The Olympic Park plywood hoardings are currently being taken down and replaced with a high security wire mesh fence as part of the construction plans. StudioSuperniche's response; Utilise the plywood to make structures for east London local niche groups including bird-watchers, market stall-holders and allotment keepers. This 'urban furniture' is set to be of use to local residents after the Olympic Games. I like the sound of the Ping Pong Pavilion.

An invitation to read

the inspired words of Nora.

London Design Guide

Design Commentator Max Fraser's just published guide. A morning 'two clicks on the PayPal' purchase. The monosyllabic cover with its graph paper is a little deceptive. This exquisite and comprehensive survey reveals Fraser's contemporary and vintage design corners of London (with a nice mention of 66 Portland Place).

London Design Festival begins tomorrow until the 27th September.Itinerary plotting.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

I have been distracted lately. And haven't been sending enough post. Apologies. I'll find some stamps.

Monday, 14 September 2009

EVENT: Werner Herzog

Prolific filmmaker Werner Herzog will be in discussion with Paul Holdengräber, Director of Public Programs of the New York Public Library on 3rd October at the Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre.
Part of Intelligence Squared's Legends Live series, the talk has been advertised with questions in advance. Herzog is set to be asked:

Was the 20th century a mistake?
What is the climate of excitement which makes film possible?
How were the colossal prehistoric menhirs of Brittany erected?
How do you move a steamship in similar fashion over a mountain?
Why is tourism a sin?
Why is travel on foot a virtue?

Holdengräber has aptly termed the medium of talks as 'cognitive theatre'. I'm curious about his style as well as Herzog's revelations on how to hoist a steamship over a hill.


Lyell marks the season change.

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Labour and Wait

If I can't live in this shop ,I might just pack their colander in the move.

Flat 3 last suppers soon.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

A postcard from a lady of letters on Persephone Books . The Bloomsbury Salon is on Lamb's Conduit Street.

St James's Park Allotment

Step over the road from the ICA on The Mall and peruse a garden of tomatoes, aubergines and corn on the cob. The experts are on site to advise on how to grow your own. I want to be 9 again so I can go to the 'make your own tea-lights' craft session.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009


Soon to be released documentary , Archiculture, traces the design projects of 5 architecture students. I've been looking into an RIBA London mentoring scheme and thinking about the relationship between students and the profession. What you learn and what you practice. Architecture Magazine's soundbite for the film is both epic and hilariously underwhelming.
"Two designers turned filmmakers put the spotlight on architectural education".

Lebanese Canteen

Comptoir Libanais for babaghanoush with pomegranate seeds and rosewater macaroons on Wigmore Street.