Alun Jones, Louise Underhill – Renewing Historical Typologies

Lecture date: 2016-09-19

Series: AA Visiting School x t-sa forum Annual Lecture Series: Renewal – Structure – Emotion

For the last two years, t-sa forum has investigated the concept of ‘renewal’ in architecture in London as examples of how history is updated. This year, in parallel to the visiting school workshop at the AA, t-sa forum is organising a series of two conversations between established practitioners and recent AA graduates to discuss relationships between themes of renewal, structure and emotion.

In the second lecture of this series, architect Alun Jones will be in conversation with AA graduate Louise Underhill to discuss the dualities that arise when working with the existing fabric of cities. Alun will discuss Dow Jones’ refurbishment of the crypt at Christ Church, Spitalfields where, by opening up this subdivided space, they were able to make it converse with Hawksmoor’s material choices and joinery details in the church above. Here monumentality is reconciled with the human scale, the old conjoins with the new, and the church engages in new ways with the surrounding city. Similar issues about time, history, typology and making the past relevant to the contemporary context are echoed in Louise’s 5th year project, Framing: The Undoing of the Terraced House, where she interrogated the relationships between interior and exterior, front and back, upstairs and downstairs, the spaces of the adult, child, man, woman, work or domestic activities, and of the single versus the many. The project questions what constitutes a family home within the city today and proposes an architecture that does away with these binaries to advocate for a more layered understanding of space.

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