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Museum of the Theatre

Part 1 Project 1999
Heidi Svenningsen
Michael Lavender
De Montfort University Leicester UK
My design investigations always start with the study of the urban fabric and then flow around the localised environment and the area to be infiltrated by the building.
The Food for the Body project is a concept that tries to unify two areas of De Montfort's campus; office workers on one side, students on the other. Not only does a merging space within the building link together a restaurant and book shop but also the two areas of the campus meet and symbolically form a focal point.
Norway's extreme climatic conditions create the need for cave type shelter. However,with permafrost preventing building into the earth, the 'cave' has to sit delicately on top of the earth having a strict axial form which allows a direct focus on the view down the fjord.
The Museum project represents a journey through time which generates the structural form and allows the linear spaces to delicately wrap around the route. This is then related to the vista to the dome of St Paul's on the North Bank and also gives a focus to the urban fabric.
Simplicity of design that is focused and relative, gives a clear statement about the building's soul and its role in the environment.

Heidi Svenningsen
Michael Lavender

Design work is set in the context of discussions based upon contemporary theoretical ideas and phenomenon which reflect the spirit of the times.
Michael Lavender's work is mature and a good example of this approach to design and is reflected in a conceptual idea concerned with designing for the mind and for the body. The vehicle chosen for this was that of a book shop and restaurant. Michael's design solution was positioned in a particularly sensitive way.
Arguably, the most enjoyable project which Michael completed, although the smallest in scale, was for the design of a Hunting Lodge in Norway. Michael had knowledge of the location and was able to incorporate regional features in the design and produce a well controlled solution.
In addition, a study in depth was required which would incorporate urban and environmental problems. the idea for the project was that of a journey through time which was based upon the notion of a Museum of the theatre to be developed on the South Bank in London. Although larger in scale than the other work, the solution is technically assured whilst formally presenting a strong statement. The detail qualities of the work are especially effective.

• Page Hits: 1372         • Entry Date: 08 January 1999         • Last Update: 10 May 2001