"A Home, an Office and a University"- Sir Albert Richardson (1880-1964) in 1956, when asked to describe his home in Ampthill, Bedfordshire.
50 years ago Sir Albert Richardson, architect, educator, collector and Modern Georgian Paradox died. In September last year Richardson’s unique collection was removed from his home in Ampthill, an 18th century house without electricity such that Richardson could authentically appreciate Georgian architecture, to Christie’s in London.
As a response to the sale of Richardson’s collection, and taking the opportunity for a reappraisal of Richardson 50 years after his death, I have proposed a museum to hold Richardson’s collection, coupled with a satellite campus for The Bartlett School of Architecture and The Slade School of Art, (institutions in which Richardson once taught).
Sited at Stewartby in Bedfordshire, the location of Richardson’s model village for the nearby brickworks, (which forms part of the museum’s collection), and a short distance from Ampthill, the proposal uses techniques allegorical to Richardson’s, through multiple scales, times and modes of representation (all found within Richardson’s collection). In this way, models become buildings, multiple architectures are present, and weather is represented- rather than existing.
The proposal seeks to go beyond the caricature of Richardson as a living Georgian, a myth he himself perpetuated, and tease out his other fluctuating and myriad identities- reminding the viewer that the same man who would be taken to dinner parties round Ampthill in a sedan chair and Georgian costume, also taught a young Peter Smithson, (who had sought him out), and lecturing in the 1920s about the possibilities of architecture emulating the modern motor car and tube train, at a time when Le Corbusier was making similar comparisons. Truly a Modern Paradox.
Project description for 5th year MArch project at the Bartlett, (see previous posts)