David Chipperfield RA

I have just been listening to the podcast produced by the Art Newspaper (ow.ly/Vk0w30k55XY) which consists of ten minutes of me (you can skip that) and then a long and fascinating description by David Chipperfield of his methodology at the RA – his focus on how spaces are used, what he calls his diagnostic approach, his sensitivity and interest, for example, in how works of art are stored, his sense of the project being a jigsaw of interrelated parts which needed ordering and clarification – which is precisely what he has done. He is asked how far it helped or hindered him that there were so many architect RAs involved and I suddenly realised how important it had been to him that every aspect of his proposals was being intensively inspected by his peers, including Sir Nicholas Grimshaw, who chaired the Client Committee (and who, I think, suggested putting the lavatories on the ground floor, not the basement), Chris Wilkinson, who took over the Client Committee, and Spencer de Grey, who was responsible with Norman Foster for the Sackler Galleries: tough judges of every aspect of what was proposed.

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