I have spent the day immured in the RIBA library on Portland Place:  a fine piece of 1930s half-modernism, designed by Grey Wornum and opened in 1934 to commemorate the centenary of the RIBA’s foundation.   Wornum was the grandson of Ralph Wornum, the prolific writer on art and Keeper of the National Gallery.   Grey Wornum edited books on craftsmanship before the first world war, lost an eye during it, and in the 1920s worked with Louis De Soissons.   His design for the RIBA was chosen from 284 entries, its half-modernism owing to his knowledge of contemporary Swedish design.   I love its library, which sadly is closed for the rest of the holiday season.


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