Todd Williams and Billie Tsien

I went to hear Todd Williams and Billie Tsien talk in the Royal Institution as part of the RA’s Architecture Programme.   I wanted to hear them because they were responsible for the recent building for the Barnes  Foundation, which (with a few reservations) I admired:  not least for the fact that its redisplay of the collection is very unusually an improvement on the original, which they demonstrated by juxtaposing a wall of the new with the old, demonstrating the very subtle variations of window design, wall colours and the way the pictures are hung.   I liked their philosophy which consists of only doing projects they want to do, either domestic or public;  emphasising the role of drawing and model making in design;  and trying to do things slowly, not fast.   Now they are doing the Presidential Center in Chicago for Barack Obama.

This was my view of the Barnes Collection with the addition of plastic swans:-



One thought on “Todd Williams and Billie Tsien

  1. That looks good, complete with Swans!

    But, apart from a couple of projects in Hong Kong and Mumbai, they seem to have worked exclusively in the States. Could you invite them to the RA next year ?

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