Fred Sturgis’ lovely self portrait from today’s Guardian Weekend magazine at Starfall Farm
Went back to Starfall Farm today – really please to see how its being occupied. The concrete worktop in the kitchen is ageing beautifully
Went back to the Archangel recently for a friend’s birthday, for the first time for a while. Still looking good, although there’s a lot in the detail that I wish we’d done differently. I was most distressed by the nosings on the mild steel stair which someone had added – visible in this picture, and also a steel handrail on top of the glass which I hated. I enjoyed doing the project though, and reminded me how interesting conservation type work can be. I remember asking Peter Salter once why he was doing a conservation course, and he said (obviously) ‘Because I’m interested in materials…’ which made me realise how locked in one particular mindset I was. This space in the photos was on the ground floor (not visible below 2 floors of mezzanines here) a skittles alley with a false ceiling and all the spaces visible in the photographs were inaccessible except for pigeons for the last 50 years. The Archangel has just been bought by a pub chain, and I wonder whether its rather eccentric charm will be retained.
I went back to Hartcliffe recently to take some more photographs of Room 13 five years or so after we did it. I’m sad we never had it professionally photographed, but at the time it seemed a huge expense/indulgence and I guess somehow counter to the home made trash aesthetic of the project – to fetishize it in a series of slick and expensive photographs. But of course, with the right photographer it wouldn’t be like that – If you are a photographer and can give me a good price to document the project and context now, please get in touch.
I’ll admit it, I’m a tart – I love a cover as much as the next guy:
Full Starfall Farm article in Inside Out here: IO9612p112-119_hmstarfall
Mitchell Taylor Workshop’s polemical city farm project on the site of the RRP designed ‘Cheesegrater’ on Leadenhall Street in the City of London featured in new book on Urban Agriculture – Here: 82_Carrot_City_Leadenhall_low
Summary of Presentation at Architecture Centre:
Mitchell Taylor Workshop’s proposal for a temporary use of the ‘cheese grater’ development site (in the City’s Leadenhall Street), offered an innovative and cost-effective solution for keeping a large, empty site vibrant. This exciting proposal could be adopted as a model for other disused sites across the UK. This session involved a presentation by Piers Taylor of Mitchell Taylor Workshop, in conversation with Gillian Fearnyough, Director of The Architecture Centre, Bristol.
Click here to hear a podcast of this talk.
Discussions ranged from whether the responsibility for local food production lies with the consumer or supermarkets; weaving supermarkets and shops into the fabric of cities rather than placing them at city edges; retrofitting existing buildings to allow food production; whether change would be more sustainable at a personal scale (e.g. families with small allotments) or at a community scale (e.g. shared growing spaces); how best built environment advocates and educators can engage in this debate.