The new term at London Met requires a new design brief for studio 2 (formally studio 10) as well as a new site: the Isle of Dogs.
Watch this space for further details about this year’s course, including the location of the studio trip, but for now – as we prepare to stand in front of the class to welcome our new students – our thoughts turn to how we passed the summer.
In that sense, aberrant can empathise with many our students: we also had to hop aboard the moving-in and moving-out merry-go-round that habitually bookends the beginning and end of the lazy season in the Capital.
Okay, the aberrant relocation was more professional than personal. And it is true that switching our studio from the austerity of the V&A to the new Ravensbourne building next to The 02 arena has seen us reap ample recompense for the distress of moving day. The design college’s incubator scheme, for example, will be collecting the off-cuts of aberrant architecture’s creativity as a hedge in case we ever get Norman Foster famous.
But we strongly refute any suggestion that the convenience of the Jubilee Line or the proximity of the Isle of Dogs to our lovely new home in North Greenwich (designed by Foreign Office Architects) played any part in the choice of site for Studio 2.
As proof of the type of lengths we will go to for the cause, the aberrant summer holiday this year was to a reclaimed bunker in Ebbw Vale, where we went to install an exhibition at the National Eisteddfod of Wales.
The aberrant installation was a translation of a quote from our book ‘Love Stories of Recession’, which we cut into several identical plywood panels (making full use of the facilities at Ravensbourne) and layered over multicoloured backing.
Over 150,000 people visit the Welsh-language event each year, which might explain the spike in website sales of the über exclusive Love Stories of Recession – available in only one good bookshop. Who needs Richard and Judy?
We only hope that our new Eisteddfod readership doesn’t use too many double effs in their feedback reviews when they take delivery of a book entirely in English!
August also saw us return to the V&A to run a summer school for the Steven Lawrence Trust. The two-day event challenged our young participants to digitally mash up their favourite buildings featured in the museum’s 1:1 architecture exhibition.
Although no buildings were hurt during the digital making of the final models, the kids took up the challenge with the type of youthful enthusiasm that we look to inspire in our more discerning London Met students each year we unveil the new design brief. Let’s see what we get this time…