[Broadcast on 26th June]
Sir Richard Rogers talks about David Adjaye's work
David Adjaye, in conversation with Isabel Hilton
Born 1966 in Dar-Es-Salam, Tanzania,
A graduate of the Royal College of Art, David Adjaye started a small practice in 1994. In five years time he had built a unique reputation in reconstructing cafes, bars and private homes. Rowan Moore of the Evening Standard wrote, "David Adjaye has an artist's clarity of concept."
In June 2000 he reformed his company as Adjaye/Associates and the firm has grown to 30 in the last year. Published highlights include the Elektra House which Deyan Sudjic described as a "startling original house in Whitechapel (which) has breathed new life into an architectural species that looked to be extinct; the one-off house that doesn't cost a fortune."
On the other end of the spectrum is the £2 million refurbishment of a penthouse at Kensington Palace Gardens. Naomi Stungo wrote about both projects for the RIBA Journal and concludes: Like the Elektra House before it, the penthouse is a strange and intriguing place.
Despite their very differentbudgets, the two projects share certain preoccupations - notably, the way materials are treated a surface veneer and the way natural light is brought down into the plan using James Turrell-like rooflights."
But it is the firm's "David versus Goliath" competition wins that have garnered the most attention. In June 2001, beating out several high profile studios, Adjaye won the Idea Store competition to design two new-build libraries in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.