Last week, I was invited to Giles Round’s exhibition, ‘We Live in The Office’, before it was opened to the public. I headed to the architecture gallery at RIBA, excited to learn about the premise of the project.
When Round was asked to work with RIBA, his research inspired him to focus on the contrast between exteriors and interiors of buildings, particularly in the city. As a result, his exhibition centres around the juxtaposition of architectural purpose and later repurposing, hence the title of the exhibition, ‘We Live in The Office’, whereby Round references Branzi’s ‘Weak and Diffuse Modernity‘, within which he stated, because of the ever changing purposes of buildings, ‘one works at home and lives in the office’.
Tiles surround the walls of the exhibition, showing floor plans for buildings, suited to their original purpose. Round’s research included a range of buildings whose purposes had been changed. There are purpose built offices that are now flats, a printing factory that has been a bank, court and offices and buildings built to deliberately produce a façade.
Round, inspired by these exteriors, made prints in their image, for example he created a square pattern, inspired by the Centrepoint building, he made art reminiscent of monastery windows and factory fronts. Visitors of the exhibition can admire the tiles and understand the project before heading to the prints table where they can pick some of these prints and order a custom vase. Round wanted to make buildings into objects and objects into buildings. The exhibition is open now and does not close until the 5th of February 2017, within which time, every vase made to order will be placed on the white shelves which were empty. They will grow into their own city of new buildings.
I thoroughly enjoyed the concept and the talks of the evening and recommend anyone in London, or visiting between now and February, make the trip to RIBA to see it for yourself!