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Martin Centre Research Seminar Series: The Frailty of Certainty

Gordon Benson OBE RA AADip SADG ARIBA FRIAS (Director of Benson + Forsyth LLP Architects)
When Nov 07, 2012
from 01:15 PM to 02:15 PM
Where Classroom, Department of Architecture
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Abstract: Architecture is the inescapable art and language that surrounds us. It is assimilated and employed, often unconsciously, in everyday life. As a language it becomes a reservoir of and conduit for culture. Architects can put words to the subliminal messages which are felt and sensed, and through architecture, express and make recognisable moods, ideas and values which range from the pragmatic to the sublime, from the most personal and intimate to the extremities of philosophical abstraction. Our approach is selectively inclusive – interweaving historical and contemporary references in order to reclaim architecture’s capacity to speak directly to its most and least sophisticated users. The talk will trace the thought which has informed the work of the practice and how this has evolved or endured.

Biography: Gordon Benson graduated from the Architectural Association in 1968 and set up practice with Alan Forsyth in 1978. Both were design tutors in the AA, 1977 – 1986. Gordon Benson held the Chair of Architecture, University of Strathclyde, 1986 – 1990; and was Simpson visiting Professor, Edinburgh University, 1991 – 1996. His buildings include: the Divided House Museum and Joyhanna Museum, Japan (1994); the Museum of Scotland (1998) - won the AIA Award, EAA Centenary Medal (2000), Scottish Design Awards for Best Building (1999); National Gallery of Ireland, - won RIAI Regional Award, RIBA Regional Award (2002); Wordsworth Archive for the Wordsworth Trust (2005); Quayside Housing, Dublin (2005); Bottle Lane, Nottingham (2007). Currently involved in mixed-use projects in Victoria Kensington, Islington and St. Albans.