INSPIRATION SERIES – WEEK 4 – ARCHITECT

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Rogers & Piano – our inspirational architects

We couldn’t just pick one, you know us by now and we like to take inspiration from the many not the few!
When walking around some areas of London you can’t help but revel in the amazing structures and newly designed buildings popping up along the river (and beyond). Likewise, in cities such as Paris, Berlin and New York you are visually spoilt by enormous imposing buildings adding to, creating and exciting already iconic skylines.

The Roger’s and Piano duo are renowned worldwide for their incredible designs and modern, cutting edge concepts and in our opinion, between them the world is architecturally more interesting.

Italian born Renzo Piano and British Richard Roger’s have long been architectural wonders, between them designing many famous buildings.

Most famously however was when the duo won a competition just over 40 years ago to design and build the Centre Pompidou in Paris.
If you haven’t ever seen the centre in person then get yourself to Paris tout suite…the building is sometimes called the inside-out building. The construction used over 15,000 tonnes of steel – that’s a lot of steel.
The Pompidou’s approach sees its colour-coded technical inner workings expressed externally, the aim of which was to have column free floorpans in each of the buildings ten floors.
Yellow is for electrics, Blue marks air-conditioning pipework, green denotes water pipes and red highlights tubular escalators and elevators.

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As Visual Merchandisers we often try our best to hide the inner workings of a prop or display, but this just shows that sometimes the beauty can be in the very parts that construct it.

This unusual design wasn’t without controversy; Rogers himself recalled that the design wasn’t always well received with one passerby striking him with her umbrella when he revealed himself as the designer. “The shock of the new is always really rather difficult to get over,” he said. However, the public did eventually embrace the design according to Piano.

The pair take their own inspiration from their surroundings and each projects purpose and background. This means that although there may be some constants in their designs each one has it’s own personality and stylistic features.

Coming back to London Roger’s designed the now Grade 1 listed Lloyds building and the well known Millennium Dome (pictured), both icon buildings we have grown to love. The dome is still one of the worlds biggest in this style.

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Piano has designed some amazing structures, all with a similar style of construction such as the Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre in Nouméa, New Caledonia and the Nemo science centre in Amsterdam.

Most recently and again, with London in mind, we couldn’t forget to mention the Shard (pictured), designed by Piano. This neo-futuruism style of architecture is a nod to a better future, a very avant guard style which is bringing in a new wave of design to our skylines. Everytime was find ourselves in London Bridge you can’t help but marvel in the sheer size, shape and reflections of this stunning building.

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Recently we reminded ourselves to always look up as there are too many times we walk along the street with our noses in our phones and miss inspirational architectural moments…we invite you to do the same!

If you’re out and about and see any cool buildings, let us know.