79 episodes

A podcast about architecture, buildings and cities, from the distant past to the present day. Plus detours into technology, film, fiction, comics, drawings, and the dimly imagined future.

With Luke Jones and George Gingell.

About Buildings + Cities Luke Jones & George Gingell Discuss Architecture, History and Culture

    • Visual Arts
    • 4.7, 167 Ratings

A podcast about architecture, buildings and cities, from the distant past to the present day. Plus detours into technology, film, fiction, comics, drawings, and the dimly imagined future.

With Luke Jones and George Gingell.

    71 — Christopher Alexander — 2/2 — Pattern Language

    71 — Christopher Alexander — 2/2 — Pattern Language

    In our second episode on Christopher Alexander, we discuss 'A Pattern Language', the book he wrote with Murray Silverstein and Sara Ishikawa, published in 1977. The text proposes a list of patterns, derived from experience, imagination and vernacular traditions, from the scale of the city to the balcony and the flowerbed. The text has been influential on many professions, from architects to computer programmers, and its blend of universal claims, spatial analysis, political idiosyncrasy and design logic makes it a unique and intriguing piece of theory. We then discuss some of Alexander's buildings, which we admittedly have not been to visit, but generally we find them to be somewhat wanting!

    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.

    Support the show on Patreon to receive bonus content for every show. Check out our most recent bonus on the debate between Christopher Alexander and Peter Eisenman at Harvard in 1982.

    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!

    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook

    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org





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    • 1 hr 26 min
    70 — Christopher Alexander — 1/2 —Notes on the Synthesis of Form

    70 — Christopher Alexander — 1/2 —Notes on the Synthesis of Form

    This is the first episode of a new series on Design Theorist, Architect, Mathematician and Computation Fan, Christopher Alexander. Alexander studied Mathematics at Cambridge University in the 1950s, then undertook the first ever PhD in Architecture at Harvard, where he applied newly emerging ideas of computational analysis to questions of design. The results of this combination are bizarre, often illogical, undeniably of there time, but also lay the foundations for much subsequent interaction between design and computation, including the Parametricism that we discussed in our last series on Zaha Hadid. In this first episode we mainly discuss his 1964 work Notes on the Synthesis of Form, which was based on his PhD thesis. Make sure to subscribe to catch the next episode, where we will discuss his 1977 work with Ishikawa and Silverstein, Pattern Language.

    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.

    Support the show on Patreon to receive bonus content for every show.

    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!

    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook

    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org

    This podcast is powered by Pinecast.

    • 48 min
    69 — Zaha Hadid — 4/4 — The Parametric Years

    69 — Zaha Hadid — 4/4 — The Parametric Years

    In this final episode on Zaha Hadid we discuss a small fraction of the huge number of projects that ZHA produced from the early noughties up to Zaha's untimely death in 2016. We attempt to reflect on Zaha's legacy as a designer, try to understand what concepts defined her design process, from Parametricism to pure sculptural form. There are so many projects from this period that we could have talked about, so we focus on discussing the most
    Projects discussed: Maxxi Museum in Rome, Ordrupgaard Museum Extension in Denmark, Phaeno Science Centre in Wolfsburg, the Kartal Masterplan proposed for Istanbul, Bergisel Ski Jump and the Nordpark railway stations in Innbruck, the London Aquatic Centre built for the 2012 Olympics, the Library at the University of Economics in Vienna, Dongdaemun Design Plaza in Seoul, the SOHO projects in Beijing and the King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center in Saudi Arabia.
    Pictures of all these projects will be on our pinned instagram story titled 'Zaha 4'.
    The site recording at the London Aquatics Centre will be published in full on our Patreon, which you can access for just $3 a month.
    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.
    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!
    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook
    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org
    This podcast is powered by Pinecast.

    • 1 hr 39 min
    68 — Zaha Hadid — 3/4 — Vitra to Cardiff

    68 — Zaha Hadid — 3/4 — Vitra to Cardiff

    The third part of our ongoing series on Zaha Hadid! In this episode we discuss the early buildings of the practice, including IBA housing in Berlin, Vitra Fire Station, Spittelau Viaduct Housing, and the unbuilt competition winning design for the Cardiff Opera House. As always, make sure you check out our pinned instagram story to see pictures of all of the projects we discuss. Thanks for listening!
    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.
    Support the show on Patreon to receive bonus content for every show.
    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!
    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook
    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org
    This podcast is powered by Pinecast.

    • 1 hr 23 min
    Bonus Unlocked — 48.5 — OMA — Bigness

    Bonus Unlocked — 48.5 — OMA — Bigness

    UNLOCKED PATREON BONUS


    This unlocked bonus episode comes from our Patreon feed, where we post extra content and bonus discussions with every episode of the podcast. This bonus follows on from Episode 48, discussing the early projects of OMA and the theory of BIGNESS developed by Rem Koolhaas. If you want to access many hours of bonus material like this, you can subscribe to our Patreon for just $3 a month at www.patreon.com/about_buildings.


    Our series on Zaha Hadid will continue next week.


    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.


    Support the show on Patreon to receive bonus content for every show.


    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!


    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook


    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org


    This podcast is powered by Pinecast.

    • 34 min
    67 — Zaha Hadid — 2/4 — The Peak

    67 — Zaha Hadid — 2/4 — The Peak

    In our second episode on Zaha Hadid, we're covering the rest of the 1980s, from the competition to design the Peak Leisure Centre in Hong Kong, to the Deconstructivism exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The episode also includes an interview with Andrew King, a principal at Lemay Architects in Canada, Professor at McGill University and winner of two AIA Progressive Architecture Awards. In the late 1980s Andrew worked in Zaha's office, and the interview gives a wonderful insight into Zaha's method and the close personal relationships she forged with people who worked for her. We want to warmly thank Andrew for his time and memories of Zaha, and also thank friend of the show Kai Woolner-Pratt for putting us in touch with him. If you want to listen to the full length interview, you can find it on our Patreon.


    Make sure you check out the Zaha Hadid pinned story on our instagram to see all the images for this episode.


    Edited by Matthew Lloyd Roberts.


    Support the show on Patreon to receive bonus content for every show.


    Please rate and review the show on your podcast store to help other people find us!


    Follow us on twitter // instagram // facebook


    We’re on the web at aboutbuildingsandcities.org


    This podcast is powered by Pinecast.

    • 1 hr 4 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
167 Ratings

167 Ratings

Cal O'Boyle ,

Hilariously Snobby + British

Hilariously snobby and British this conversational deconstruction of the literature of architecture is savage (though probably warranted) but most of all a heart warming, smart, and screwball appreciation of ideas in and around the built world.

Neo-peasant ,

Just great!

George and Luke are incredibly fun to listen to. Yes I’m an architecture nerd, but their podcast touches on film, graphic novels, urban design, Renaissance art and connects things in ways I haven’t thought about before.

Ty Twhy? ,

It's lovely

It is. Even if you know nothing about architecture I would reccomend if only to see how one might go about falling in love with a subject.

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