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Week 12 | Britain’s Next Top Designer: 29.03.10

“A feather room is exactly the kind of leftfield proposal that would get a young architect noticed!” First up: Langley Grammar School This week, we welcomed back the year 9 students from Langley Grammar School for the second part of the schools workshop. As you will surely remember from our Week 2 blog post, we gave the kids a brief to design a stage set for their school canteen that would allow lunch to be served during the day and a show to be performed in the evening. What do you mean, you don’t remember? What about in Week 8, …

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Always winter and never Christmas.

It has been a bit like living in Narnia recently. After all the excitement of last week's PV, the constant round of press interviews and VIPtours I should really have taken myself off to a quiet room to recuperate. But of course I couldn't resist coming in on Saturday morning, to be there when the doors opened for the first time to the public. As I walked to the V&A I was suddenly struck by a change in the air, a definite hint of Spring which was confirmed by the glorious blossom I encountered as I slipped down a residential …

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Week 11 | Booze & Schmooze: 22.03.10

“There should be an app that churns out interesting chat to have with celebrities.” Tracey’s World: If You Sow Them, They Will Come According to an old Spanish proverb, under a tattered cloak you will generally find a good drinker, wise words for the launch of the V&A’s quilts exhibition on Wednesday evening, where we found ourselves elbow-deep in champagne listening to Tracey Emin introduce the exhibition. Some elderly Spaniards also say that you should not check the teeth of a horse given as a present, but who knows what that means – I don’t speak Spanish – and after …

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Studio Mumbai off-site construction photographs

Some exciting updates this afternoon from India: we've received via email a large group of photographs from Sam Barclay, one of the team who are currently assembling the Studio Mumbai structure in their workshop yard in Mumbai (orginal concept drawing shown above, to refresh your memories!). Once the team have tested construction methods, structural feasibilityand material finishes, the building will be disassembled and transported in parts to London, for final assembly, on-site, at the V&A in the Cast Courts. The image above shows a large-scale model which the Studio Mumbai team developed as a proof-of-concept. The photograph below depicts the …

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Ta Da!!!

After six years of blood, sweat and quite a few tears – we have arrived! Enjoy. ps is it me or do Ilook spookily like Elsa Lanchester in Bride of Frankenstein?

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Duly Noted

Among the prize exhibits in the V&A's new Medieval and Renaissance Galleries are the so-called Forster Codices, a trio of notebooks kept by Leonardo da Vinci. They got me thinking about the books that artists and designers use for sketching. One of the interesting features of the Leonardo volumes is that they include five separate notebooks, set into three bindings. It's a reminder that in the early modern period, the relation between a book's pages and its covers was quite flexible. Right up until the 18th century, you had to get your loose leaves of paper from a bookseller, and …

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Week 10 | Let’s Get Ready to Rumble: 15.03.10

“Our idea for the summer exhibition is so bloody uncooked it could be steak tartare!” Summer Lovin’ Citizens of New York and Paris are notorious for fleeing their host cities in the summer months whilst we Londoners prefer to stick it out, sweating through July heat waves or dampened by the August downpours and complaining about whichever weather system we are given in equal measure. But whatever happens to the sky above London this summer, aberrant intends to make the experience of staying in the capital more pleasant for everyone. To this end, we spent the majority of the week …

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Rural Studio – visit to Green Oak Carpentry

Andrew Freear, Director of Rural Studio, flew in to the UK today from Alabama (after a short detour to Florence). Andrew and I travelled down to Hampshire to visit Green Oak Carpentry, the contractors who will be building the Rural Studio 'Woodshed' for the exhibition. We went down and spent the day at one of their barns, so that Andrew (below, on right) could take a look at the timber that Green Oak have sourced for the structure. One of the key aspects of the project is that the Woodshed will be constructed entirely from forest thinnings (trees removed from …

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The studio environment

The public studio space created an interactive environment in which the viewer could experience each piece of work, in its transitional state. The studio window within the Sackler Center acted as an active surface in which the viewer could engage with the processes. This surface also acted as the limit in order for these processes to be housed by the architecture of the studio, by using the floor, walls and windows as the canvas for the initial placement of the work.

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