Jillian and Arthur M. Sackler Wing
Royal Academy of Arts, London
9 October–9 November 2003.
This landform is again recomposed for the four panels executed for the chapel of St Margaret at Truro cathedral in Cornwall. An important catalyst in this direction was Aitchison's Italian Government scholarship of 2000. From this stint at Montecastelli has emerged a powerful series of landscape paintings, thinly painted yet movingly emotive of place, of garden landscape. A distant, elevated crucifix of Montencastelli is introduced here via a series of figments; birds, plus a smaller, domestically scaled crucifix, a symbolic bird, a white horse, birds on a lake, vying with the moon (or possibly sun) set in the same picture frame. The portraits shown adopt for the most part the same conventional pose and expression, arms loosely folded, eyes glancing off to the right.
Aitchison's Royal Academy show is clearly a milestone for this painter, and has been meticulously curated and hung in Norman Foster's Sackler Galleries, where the scale is perfect for Aitchison's work. Its distillation of discreet images from everyday life is presented in a mode where elimination of the non-essential offers an unwritten code. Perhaps it is in Uglow's fastidious litany that the dynamic of form binds us in, while Aitchison provides us with escape routes outwards.
Braun AG Headquarters, Melsungen, Germany
Braun AG Headquarters, Melsungen, Germany – In 2002 this famous project stands complete as perhaps the final masterpiece of the Stirling/Wilford office, executed together with Walter Nageli in Germany
The First Architectural Biennale Beijing 2004
It would not be an exaggeration to claim that the 21st century belongs to Asia - if not to China alone. Deng's reopening of doors and the economic reform of the 1980s and 1990s paved the way for a resurgence of the Chinese economy.
Sculptural Architecture in Austria
This masterly exhibition has been organised with the support of, and in co-operation with, the Federal Chancellery of Austria and the Ministry of Culture of the People's Republic of China. It is the brainchild of the architect, Professor Hans Hollein, who curated it from Vienna in liaison with the Director of the National Art Museum of China, Beijing. It represents a long affair between Austria and China on cultural matters, and the Chinese authorities are to be complimented on their perspicacity and understanding for seeing it through. It follows an initial exhibition in Shanghai in 2001, covered by Studio International.
Awesome the group has been, for they have become a 20th century phenomenon. The total revision of architecture since the 1970s could not have happened so readily without this exuberant, intellectually fizzing, irreverent band of six. It was a long haul, and could not have happened without a remarkable, ingenious and dogged persistence to hold the course. The group, or at least those still alive in 2002, received the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Gold Medal for Architecture, indissolubly as a group.