This year, Open House London takes a more tightly curated approach than usual, grouping buildings into ‘Collections' that encourage visitors to explore the programme thematically. Amongst others, categories include Radical Housing; Architecture for the Climate Emergency; Colonial Histories; and Race and Space. In each collection, there is a mix of films that can be watched on the Open House website, the usual building visits with social distancing measures, and self guided itineraries. The widened programming that crosses digital and physical spaces was a response to the pandemic.
Open House films
One of the films in the series explores Bill Dunster Zedfactory Architects' BedZED Centre (pictured here). The project is a mixed use eco-village designed as an example of a low-carbon neighbourhood featuring pedestrianised streets, and lower energy bills for residents. Harper describes the films as ‘pithy documentaries' that aim to recreate the physical Open House experience for viewers.
If you can't make it to Open House, there is a way to bring the festival to your kitchen table with a group of card models commissioned by Open House assistant curator Hafsa Adan. The Model London series features buildings such as St Paul's Cathedral, Ernö Goldfinger's Glenkerry House, The Hoover Building and The Treasury.
The Alternative Guide to the London Boroughs
Edited by Owen Hatherley, this book explores London’s neighbourhoods through essays and images. Ellie Stathaki, Wallpaper* architecture editor, writes: ‘The essays feel intimate and the authors’ voices are distinct, engaging and direct. There are tales about origins, travels and childhoods; all superimposed with architectural facts and tales of urban exploration.' Read more here.
Slavery and the City
This walking tour, led by London tour guides Six in the City, on 19 September, explores the City of London's involvement in the transatlantic slave trade. Sites and institutions with direct links to the slave trade will be visited, and historical facts told along the way. Conversations will also broach contemporary responses to this history, and apologies that have been made. Pictured above, the Jamaica Wine House on St Michael Alley, a site of importance to the sugar trade and work of anti-abolitionists.
Receive our daily digest of inspiration, escapism and design stories from around the world direct to your inbox
Ellie Stathaki is the Architecture Editor at Wallpaper*. She trained as an architect at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and studied architectural history at the Bartlett in London. Now an established journalist, she has been a member of the Wallpaper* team since 2006, visiting buildings across the globe and interviewing leading architects such as Tadao Ando and Rem Koolhaas. Ellie has also taken part in judging panels, moderated events, curated shows and contributed in books, such as The Contemporary House (Thames & Hudson, 2018) and Glenn Sestig Architecture Diary (2020).
Alcova's Miami debut embodies the city's mix of chill and speed
Inside the Miami debut of Milanese design show Alcova, set within the iconic 1950s Selena Gold Rush Motel
By Maria Sobrino Published
Ghada Amer’s provocative embroidered texts speak of feminism and activism
Ghada Amer explores the power of words in ‘QR Codes Revisited – London’ at Goodman Gallery in London’s Mayfair
By Nargess Shahmanesh Banks Published
Berlin's Atelier Gardens gets bright yellow focal point within MVRDV masterplan
The bright yellow HAUS 1 becomes a key addition to Atelier Gardens in Berlin, part of an ever-evolving, sustainable masterplan by MVRDV
By Harriet Thorpe Published