Aran Chadwick, Neil Thomas/Atelier One – Why Not – Part 1

Lecture date: 2010-03-03

After 20 years of practice, structural engineering firm Atelier One has gained an international reputation for specialising in challenging projects which has been compiled into a book, Liquid Threshold, which documents the inspiring diversity of Atelier One’s work and charts the fascinating creative pursuits undertaken with artists, architects and designers, including Marc Quinn, Anish Kapoor, Will Alsop, Mark Fisher and Ron Arad. Following the success of their book, this lecture will give insight into how the projects evolved and how various challenges were addressed. The practice’s unique approach of taking complex propositions and translating them through a language of first principles results in some extraordinary conclusions and is the essence of what distinguishes Atelier One’s output.

Founded by Neil Thomas in 1989, Atelier One has been described as ‘the most innovative engineering practice in the UK’. This innovation includes high-level research and implementation involving materials on an enormous scale and a variety of projects. The practice is often called upon to provide specialist advice to larger consulting practices, and has worked on numerous projects including U2’s 360-degree stage and Gardens by the Bay in Singapore.

Aran Chadwick joined Atelier One in 1992 and became a Director in 1997. Aran has worked on projects both in the UK and abroad across a range of scales. These include the largest ETFE roof in Europe and the development of structural and cladding systems for modular buildings that are currently in production. Both Neil and Aran hold a number of high profile educational posts in the UK and the US, including Visiting Professors to Yale, New Haven and to University of Texas, Austin.


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