We are very sad to hear that structural engineer and university lecturer Stefan Polónyi died on April 9, 2021, at the age of 90 in Cologne where he had worked as a freelance engineer since 1957.
Very special circumstances apply for new 254 homes on MOL. Planning permission has been granted at appeal for the Ian Ritchie Architects designed scheme on Metropolitan Open Land (MOL) at a site adjacent to Lower Sydenham station in LB Bromley.
An interview with Ian Ritchie in Money Magazine in which he discusses the Trident Park and Farsons Old Brewhouse developments.
Furniture in Architecture
The Work of Luke Hughes has been published by Thames & Hudson, 2020.
It features bespoke furniture designed collaboratively for the Sainsbury Wellcome Centre.
The Susie Sainsbury Theatre at the Royal Academy of Music, with the Angela Burgess Recital Hall directly above, is the inspiration behind Musical Architects being published by Unicorn on the 17th of March 2021.
‘The spaces are stunningly beautiful and inspiring. They will raise the bar and challenge the students and staff in every possible form of music to reach higher and search further.’
Jonathan Freeman-Attwood, Principal, Royal Academy of Music
2020 The PLAN Awards (Italy) – Education (Completed Projects): Honourable Mention
Winner of 8 national and international awards in 2019
Winner of 14 national and international awards in 2018
The scheme designed by Ian Ritchie Architects works with the historic context and architectural grain of this formerly neglected part of Covent Garden to create a vibrant, elegant new area of public space.
A contemporary central piazza forms the focal point of the development, which contains residential apartments, shops and restaurants.
2018 RICS Awards (London) – Finalist
2017 Constructing Excellence Awards – Winner
2017 Building Magazine Awards – Finalist
2017 WAF Awards – Finalist
The Sainsbury Wellcome Centre for Neural Circuits and Behaviour at UCL is one of the first buildings ever designed incorporating latest neuroscientific knowledge into its fabric from inception, and in open collaboration with its prospective neuroscientist users.
“This is a shockingly good building to work in.” Adam Kampff, PI
2020 PIDA Innovation Prize – Winner
2018 German Design Award – Winner
2017 RICS Project of the Year Award (London) – Winner
2017 RICS Design through Innovation Award (London) – Winner
2017 Galvanising Awards Duplex Award – Winner
2016 BCI Award Major Building Project of the Year (over £50m) – Winner
The RIBA national award-winning, now iconic Courtyard Theatre designed by Ian Ritchie Architects has been transformed into a vibrant, naturally lit collection of dramatic theatre performance spaces over five floors within the original, naturally weathered folded Corten steel sheet envelope.
“The Other Place is a fabulous achievement.” Erica Whyman, RSC Deputy Artistic Director
2018 Civic Trust Awards – Finalist
2017 WAF Awards – Finalist
The Spire Monument in Dublin’s centre was inspired by and reflects the ever-changing light and composition of the Irish skies. The elegant and remarkably slender form continues the tradition of standing stones and obelisks and was designed to embody an optimistic and far reaching spirit of contemporary Ireland.
All theatre production activities in Plymouth Theatre Royal’s TR2 are centralised and integrated with educational and rehearsal spaces. The design’s most striking elements are rehearsal pods, clad in a unique woven phosphor-bronze cloth, soft to eye and hand, ‘randomly’ placed on the rock riverbank.
Ian Ritchie Architects’ design for a permanent Concert Platform in Corten steel in London’s Crystal Palace Park is sculptural without being sculpture, bold yet reinforcing the surrounding rich and beautiful Paxton landscape. Nevertheless, its simplicity belies the complex acoustic performance required of it.
This 3,000m2 research office building was designed for the Prudential and Magdalen College JV. The building ‘floats’ above undercroft parking, the entrance is sheltered and east and west facing windows are shaded by horizontal veils of stainless steel mesh. The design provides adaptable accommodation for single or multiple occupancy, and the environmental controls permit natural ventilation through to full air conditioning.
Ian Ritchie Architects were commissioned by Stanhope to design, detail, supervise and deliver a multi-tenancy research-office building of 9,000m2 within 52 weeks to a fixed budget at the renowned Stockley Park. We developed the first double glazed Planar with Pilkington for the external walls. The finished building gave 92% net rental area and received several awards.
Ian Ritchie Architects led the design and realisation of the world’s largest glass hall for the new Leipzig International Exhibition Centre in collaboration with gmp. Combining simplicity of concept and construction with elegance and economy, it appears as a filigree shell within the site’s central landscape.
Ian Ritchie Architects designed the three iconic 35m high glass circulation towers giving the new Reina Sofia Museum of Modern Art in Madrid its architectural image. It was the world’s first glass installation which transferred wind load through the corner glass panels.
Ian Ritchie Architects helped conceive and develop the structure and glazing designs of the 6,000m2 roofs covering the three internal courtyards of the Louvre’s Richelieu wing, creating the Museum’s new Sculpture Courts proposed by I. M. Pei & Michel Macary.
In 1981 Ian Ritchie established his own architectural practice – Ian Ritchie Architects Ltd. (iRAL) and co-founded Rice Francis Ritchie (RFR) a design engineering practice in Paris – with Peter Rice and Martin Francis.
RFR did seminal work on glass and fabric structures during the 80s on the Museum of Science, Technology and Industry at La Villette, and the Louvre – pyramids and sculpture courts.
By the 1990s iRAL had become world-renowned for their glass architecture, material-technical innovation and intelligent environmental and sustainable design – of which iRAL’s most recent major projects, the Sainsbury Wellcome Centre for Neural Circuits and Behaviour (2016), and Royal Academy of Music Theatre and Recital Hall in London, (2018) are an evolution.
iRAL has won over 60 competitions in Europe and the UK and received over 100 national and international awards.
In this book extract Ian Ritchie RA reveals the deeper meaning of his life as an architect
A career in architecture engages with so many disciplines and aspects of life it is impossible not to enjoy it. The cyclical phenomena of nature – day following night following day, the life-regenerating cycle of the seasons – provide evidence for the Taoist paradigm. Successes and failures in architecture are part of the duality of being alive – happy and sad, good and bad, life and death. I am reminded that no amount of darkness can extinguish a candle’s flame. This is why, for me, optimism always prevails.
Architecture provides a physical reference to our cultural past and, at the point of conception, both expresses and gives us confidence to imagine a better future.
Beyond utility and aesthetics, built architecture has a metaphysical role - it shapes the emotions and behaviours of those who will live with it.
A metaphysical inquiry into the nature of space, structure and light is essential to envisage architecture that will lift the human spirit.
When the elements of this trinity are in harmony, a tangible sense of wholeness and serenity imbues an architecture that is able to touch the mind through the observer’s senses.
Architecture makes the existential tangible, and our sense of place is both a response to our physical environment and a cultural creation.