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New Now Next: Lacaton & Vassal

The Irish Architecture Foundation’s final New Now Next live virtual talk of 2021  brings together four of the world’s most acclaimed and forward-thinking architects to discuss their work and pressing architectural issues of our time.

Throughout their careers, Lacaton & Vassal have pioneered alternatives to city plans that call for the demolition of social housing. Instead, they offer a strategy that saves the building while prioritising the needs of the inhabitants, the environment, and the wider community. The Paris-based duo Anne Lacaton and Jean-Phillipe Vassal were recipients of the 2021 Pritzker Prize and key projects of theirs include the renovation of a 1960s housing block in Bordeaux (530 Dwellings at Grand Parc); the adaptive reuse of a former shipyard in Dunkirk to create the FRAC Nord-Pas de Calais art gallery; and the overhaul of the Palais de Tokyo Museum in Paris.

Nathalie Weadick, Director of the Irish Architecture Foundation says:

“This is timely! Here in Ireland, when buildings go out of commission, we automatically chose removal and replacement, without a second thought about the impact demolition has on climate change. At a critical juncture of net zero targets, I urge you to listen to Anne Lacaton and Phillippe Vassal about the value of retention and reuse. You will be inspired to do change the discourse.”

A discussion and Q&A after their presentation will be moderated  by Shelley McNamara and Yvonne Farrell from Grafton Architects. These local legends recently  won the 2021 Riba Stirling Prize for Kingston University’s free-flowing Town House, were the 2020 laureates of the Pritzker Architecture and curators of the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2018. They even graced the cover of our issue back in January 2018 which we hear they still cite as the greatest thrill of all 🙂


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