Last Friday staff at the RIBA very kindly gave some of our exchange students a short tour of the library and its research facilities, to assist them with their summer research projects. All were impressed by the help offered by the learning team, and access available to our students. It was a valuable trip, students have already made use of their online catalogue to develop their bibliography proposals further. From there we headed over to Store St. to visit The Building Centre, and more specifically to look at 2 exhibitions, Public London and Never Mind the Bollards both part of the London Festival of Architecture http://www.londonfestivalofarchitecture.org/The Public London exhibition slightly shocked our overseas spatial design students, as the giant interactive model and exhibition combined, revealed to them quite how many transformative spatial and architectural design projects are happening all over London, The exhibition inspired visits this weekend by one of our group, to areas of London until now unknown.
Outside in the South Crescent, an installation, called ‘Never mind the Bollards’ looked at the place everyday items of street furniture play within our streetscapes, and perhaps asked us to question their history, usage and design, and the contribution these sometimes overlooked items can play in shaping out public spaces.
Curator Sarah Gaventa also prompts us to question the design future of our public spaces, and highlights how little data has been gathered about how we use our public realm in the past, in the accompanying free newspaper publication – Secrets of Public space revealed