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Are you ready for the AJ100 Festival?

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AJ 100 Festival Blog

Due to the current situation with COVID-19, the usual AJ100 awards night at the Tower of London has been transformed into a virtual AJ100 Festival. The week-long programme of celebration and learning is centred around this year’s AJ100 practices and 2020 award winners.

If like the FRAME Recruitment team you are passionate about all things Architecture, you’ll want to make sure your diary is blocked out from the 14th to the 18th September and attend as many of the events on offer as possible. The Festival offers the chance for Architects and individuals alike to learn about the latest industry trends and immerse themselves in all things Architecture. 

The Architecture & Interior Design team from FRAME Recruitment will be in attendance and plan to attend several virtual events, workshops and talks online. It is free to attend and you can register for individual events at the AJ100 Festival here

What can you expect?

The AJ100 has been transformed this year in response to the climate emergency. The daily festival programme features AJ100 awards announcements, case studies, interviews, panel talks and virtual fringe events all focused on cutting-edge sustainability. The AJ100 Festival is your chance to not only join in celebrating this year’s winners but also to gain valuable insights as they shine a spotlight on the practices and individuals pushing for meaningful social and environmental change in a challenging time.

Being such a popular event and with so much on offer, we advise taking some time to look at the events on offer and start planning well in advance. More details about the Festival programme can be found here.

Here are just a few (of many) events that have caught our attention:

14th September - Roca London Gallery Virtual Tour & Discussion - Meet the team behind the award-winning Roca London Gallery, designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, and learn the fascinating story of how the architecture took shape. In this brand new film about the conceptual and technical development of the space, the design and construction teams examine the challenges presented by the existing building, discuss the design concept and spatial strategies, and give an in-depth look at the innovative processes and materials used to achieve the iconic double curvature of the interior. The film will be followed by a live Q&A about the building with Zaha Hadid Design Directors, Woody Yao and Maha Kutay, Construction Manager, Gonzalo Coello de Portugal, and Roca London Gallery Manager, David Bromell.

15th September – Talk: Can we address the climate emergency without addressing the elephant in the room? - Aggregates form the biggest component of concrete. However, we are spending our sand ‘budget’ faster than it can be produced responsibly. Even though these materials are the second-largest resources extracted and traded by volume after water, they are one of the most undervalued and least regulated in many regions. What are the impacts of this unbridled demand? Are there any solutions ahead? This session offers an introduction to what the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has termed ‘one of the major sustainability challenges of the 21st century’.

16th September – Panel Discussion: Retrofirst – Championing reuse in the built environment- Amid the escalating climate crisis, the AJ launched the RetroFirst campaign in September 2019 to prioritise retrofitting existing buildings over demolition and rebuild. A year on and the campaign has more than 250 individuals, organisations and practices supporting the campaign, but where are we today in the effort to think ‘reuse first and new build second’, especially in light of the recent economic crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic and what are the next steps in the drive to becoming a net zero carbon economy.

17th September – Panel Discussion: Increasing diversity in architecture - The under-representation of many ethnic groups in architecture translates not only to inequities within the profession, but also to missed opportunities in business. Time after time, research has shown us that a diverse workforce increases creativity, productivity, debate, and problem-solving among companies. Leveraging the benefits of a diverse workforce, however, requires a culture of inclusion and equity. So how do we go about diversifying the profession and what are the firm initiatives to create a more equitable work environment?27th - 28th June – 

18th September: AJ100 Club: Bristol in focus - While previous AJ100 Clubs have focused on Manchester and Glasgow, this is the first event to focus on Bristol. As well as being the base for both the University of Bristol and the University of the West of England (UWE), the historic south-west city has long been known for its creativity and thriving arts scene. Bristol has forged a strong social and environmental agenda in recent years and in 2015 became the UK’s first ever European Green Capital. It also boasts a lively architecture scene with the likes of AHMM and BDP rubbing shoulders with small practices such as Barefoot Architects and Emmett Russell Architects.