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Freeing the Institute (Not a Generic Build)

Part 1 Project 2008
Richard Sharp
London South Bank University London UK
This, my final semester project, places a received brief for a freedom institute into a gap site in the heart of Farringdon. It raises questions about how any institute can be physically embodied, whether a specific mission to promote freedom should call forth a particular architectural response and how a building can best foster the evolution of a collective human enterprise over time. My response, evolved through a series of exhaustive investigations and analyses concluded that a complex, matrix of relationships defined though ordered building elements but understood only through movement and relative position was the most appropriate setting for the task.
Richard Sharp

It is a commonplace observation that many of London’s organisations have evolved through colonising the predominant - though apparently unsuitable - incubator that its archetypal terraced houses represent. This inevitably invites enquiry into the role that alternative formal matrices might play in shaping the destiny of their inhabitants. Forced at the outset to pin down both a social intention and an architectural means this designer’s investigations have extended far beyond an unlikely initial preoccupation with cross-vaulting to seek minimal means of invoking an equivalent sensation of developed volume that still exploits the repetitive structural cell yet erodes its intrinsic tyranny.


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