Architecture

Photo: Longs Peak/Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Redeeming features – how Palladio marked the end of the plague in Venice

Built to give thanks for Venice’s deliverance from the plague, the church of Il Redentore remains the centre of an annual festival marking the event

13 Jul 2020
New Baris, a village in Egypt designed by Hassan Fathy (1900–89) and partly built in 1965–67.

Down to earth – the revival of building with mud

The Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy breathed new life into this ancient material in the 1940s – and it’s time it made another comeback

8 Jul 2020
Nithurst Farm in West Sussex, designed by Adam Richards and completed in 2019.

‘Like the sudden revelation of something ancient’ – in praise of contemporary follies

The best recent takes on this architectural form have a hint of magic about them

The dining room of the Villa Majorelle, designed by Henri Sauvage (1873–1932) and built in 1901–02, with a fireplace designed by Alexandre Bigot (1862–1927) and stained glass by Jacques Gruber (1870–1936). Photo: S. Levaillant; © musée d’École de Nancy

‘Living in it would be delectable but exhausting’ – at the Villa Majorelle

The art nouveau house Henri Sauvage designed for the manufacturer Louis Majorelle has been restored to its richly decorated former glory

30 Mar 2020
The interior of St Martin-in-the-Fields, showing the plasterwork ceiling made by Giuseppe Artari and Giovanni Battista Bagutti.

Instant classic – the many versions of St Martin-in-the-Fields

Commissioned 300 years ago, James Gibbs’ design for the London church was soon replicated around the world

17 Mar 2020
View of Ferrybridge B power station behind the Church of St Edward the Confessor in Brotherton, North Yorkshire, photographed by Eric de Maré in 1960. Photo: © Eric de Maré/RIBA collections

Cooling towers are a powerful presence in the landscape – and deserve to be saved

It’s time to appreciate the gracefulness of power stations before more of them disappear

24 Feb 2020
The Jantar Mantar observatory, construction of which began in the 1720s under Maharaja Sawai Jai Singh II. Photo: John East

‘These remarkable examples of Mughal technology spoke to an India freed from British rule’

An 18th-century observatory in Delhi has inspired many architects in the post-Independence era

20 Feb 2020
Installation view of ‘Ghost Parking Lot’ (completed in 1978) at the National Shopping Center in Hamden, Connecticut, by James Wines & SITE. © SITE New York

‘If James Wines’ greatest works were still around, they would be Instagram sensations’

Perhaps it’s time to catch up with the sculptor-turned-architect who has always been ahead of the pack

5 Feb 2020
The west steeple of the Parish Church of St Mary in Frampton, Lincolnshire, was finished with one of the country’s earliest stone broach spires by c. 1300.

What can be done to save England’s neglected parish churches?

The Church of England may be one of the UK’s biggest landowners, but surprisingly little of its wealth is spent on the historic buildings in its care

The west side of Henbury Hall in Cheshire, designed by Julian Bicknell and built in 1986–87.

When Palladio came to Cheshire – in the 1980s

Henbury Hall is a fine example of neo-Palladian architecture. But what does it mean to recreate a historical style?

Leadenhall Market in the City of London, designed by Horace Jones (1819–87) and opened in 1881 (photo: 2011).

Going concerns? The Victorian market halls of Horace Jones

Once feted for infrastructure projects in London, the architect is now better known for designing Tower Bridge and Leadenhall and Smithfield markets

27 Nov 2019
The Fiat Tagliero service station in Asmara, designed by Giuseppe Pettazzi and completed in 1938.

From cinemas to service stations – the modernist marvels of Eritrea

The buildings erected in Asmara during Italian rule are remarkably forward-looking – and should not be allowed to crumble

19 Nov 2019
View of the ornamental canal in the grounds of Kearsney Court in Kent, designed in 1901 by Thomas Mawson.

‘Thomas Mawson’s designs are never nostalgic’

The civic-mindedness of the visionary landscape designer and architect set him apart from his contemporaries

18 Jul 2019
Drawing of a display case, c. 1940, Lina Bo Bardi. IBCV Archives.

The variety, delicacy and wit of Lina Bo Bardi

In her drawings as in her architecture, the Italian-born Brazilian modernist was ‘radical and magical’

6 Jul 2019
Toledo metro station in Naples, designed by Oscar Tusquets Blanca.

Travelling in style on the Naples metro

William Kentridge and Sol LeWitt are among the artists making the transport system a destination in its own right

13 Jun 2019
Stained-glass skylight and mirror at the top of the Maison & Atelier Horta.

At home with Victor Horta, the master of art nouveau

The designer’s former family home-cum-studio in Brussels is a landmark of early 20th-century architecture

8 Jun 2019
Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale (detail; 1903–05), C.E. Kempe & Co.

Charles Eamer Kempe – the stained-glass designer who kitted out England’s churches

His opulent style is a staple of Victorian churches and cathedrals – but it should be seen in a wider European context

30 Apr 2019
The museum of Het Schip ('The Ship') in Amsterdam, designed by Michel de Klerk and built in 1917–20.

Schip shape – the infectiously bizarre style of the Amsterdam School

Het Schip and other buildings of this early 20th-century movement are both hyper-modern and curiously medieval

6 Apr 2019
The mosque of Ahmad ibn Tulun, Cairo, built in the 9th century.

This majestic mosque stands out in the city of a thousand minarets

The ancient mosque of Ahmad ibn Tulun deserves to be much better known

19 Feb 2019
The central space of La Piscine - musée d'art et d'industrie André Diligent, Roubaix, housed in the pool complex designed by Albert Baert and completed in 1932.

The most beautiful swimming pool in France

An abandoned art deco swimming pool is now a museum of art and industry

5 Feb 2019
The ‘theatre’ building in the Espaces d’Abraxas complex in Marne-la-Vallée, near Paris, designed by Ricardo Bofill and constructed in 1978–83.

The good, the bad and the ugly – neoclassical architecture in modern times

It was the favoured architectural style of Stalin and the Nazis. What forms does classical revivalism take today?

2 Jan 2019
Cross section by Norman Foster of the Fred Olsen Amenity Building, Millwall Docks, London (c. 1968–70).

‘The buildings come into their own when imagined in drawings’

The ‘High Tech’ architecture developed by Norman Foster and his peers in the late 1960s relied on great draughtsmanship

20 Dec 2018
The riverside façade of the Royal Festival Hall, London, designed by London County Council Architects’ Department in 1951 (photo: 1951)

‘The Southbank Centre suffers from architectural self-loathing’

Plans for a rooftop bar at the Royal Festival Hall have thankfully been scrapped, but questions remain over the stewardship of the Southbank centre

7 Nov 2018
in the 1980s after its partial collapse in 1970 (photo: 2017)

The novelty and nostalgia of the Victorian seaside pier

The great iron structures of 19th-century Britain are important parts of the island’s cultural memory

23 Oct 2018