News > Aukett Swanke at the 2017 London Festival of Architecture
Billiter Street Atrium: the first atrium in the City of London, completed in 1976, by Fitzroy Robinson
Aukett Swanke will be taking part in the 2017 London Festival of Architecture throughout June.
The event is Europe’s biggest annual architecture festival, and returns to the capital from 1-30 June with hundreds of events exploring ‘Memory’. It celebrates London as a global architectural hub, provokes questions about the life of the city, and promotes positive change to its public realm.
This year, we have created an exhibition which examines the development of the internal atrium as a private ‘public’ space in London. Working with the archives of our three originating practices, Fitzroy Robinson Partnership, Aukett and Swanke Hayden Connell, we will examine the development of spaces such as this in London, which often originated in the protection and enclosure of historic rights-of-way in the City.
Our projects go back over 60 years in London and while some sites have been redeveloped, a number of the buildings and spaces still exist intact. This is also a building element which continues to evolve and features in a number of our current projects. The exhibition will be a selectively curated mix of archival research and new photography. We also plan to include how this typology has expanded to include hotel lobbies and public areas and explore ways in which it might develop in the future.
The exhibition will take place in the atrium of the Royal Exchange in the City of London, a project with which the studio has been closely associated for over thirty years. The exhibition is a collaboration with architectural writer and researcher Chris Rogers, who has recently completed a research paper entitled ‘Opening up the Square Mile: Fitzroy Robinson and the Atrium’.