Hung by Will Alsop, the Architecture Room reflects his enthusiasm for the Summer Exhibition’s capacity to ‘bring artists and architects closer together, which is invaluable and doesn’t happen anywhere else’.
While pursuing his career as an architect, Alsop has always been a tireless painter. He believes that art can play a positive role in the development of an architect’s vision. In order to further this dialogue, he has included work by sculptors in this room and encouraged architects to ‘send in only three dimensional work, preferably sketch models, which the public love looking at. Architects’ drawings are much more difficult for visitors to enjoy.’
Installation view of Gallery VI, Summer Exhibition 2009 Photo: Francis WareFor that reason, rows of shelves have been specially installed in the Architecture Room this year. ‘Some architects have responded to my request for models, and some have ignored it. But we have plenty, and I have also painted the whole room black so that you can see the models more clearly. I used to have a completely black studio to paint in myself.’
The current economic recession has affected architecture quite severely. But Alsop remains positive: ‘I think 2009 has been challenging so far, and we’re thinking on our feet. As an architect, you’ve got to work on the basis that there’ll be no new buildings in the UK this year. So you’ve got to get on your bike, making new alliances with people from different disciplines, including artists. It could be quite exciting!’