The Art of Architecture Season 2

  • Architecture
  • 2020

In its second season The Art of Architecture meets more of the world’s leading architects. We look back at the amazing career of the late Zaha Hadid (and find out what her practice is doing now), see the new mosque in Cambridge designed by Julia Barfield, whose practice built the London eye, visit the new Lambeth Palace Library by Clare and Sandy Wright, the opera house and museum in Valencia created by Santiago Calatrava, a concert hall in the Swiss Alps by Christina Seilern, and a music school in Wimbledon from the practice set up 45 years ago by Michael and Patty Hopkins.


Director of Photography Richard Hall


Bee'ah Headquarters, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

Starting with a clean slate – an open piece of desert – the practice founded by Dame Zaha Hadid has designed an office building unlike any other. It has all the hallmarks of Hadid, the British-Iraqi architect who changed the language of world architecture. Her philosophy is carried on today by her dedicated team, led by Patrik Schumacher.

Cambridge Central Mosque

A new mosque in Cambridge comes from the practice of British architect Julia Barfield who, with her late husband David Marks, designed the London Eye. Built to accommodate a growing Muslim community, the Cambridge Central Mosque presented challenges Barfield and her team had not met before.

Lambeth Palace Library

After the Vatican, the Church of England has the largest religious archive in the world. But there has never been a building big enough to house it all. Until now. Husband and wife team Clare and Sandy Wright were given the job of designing a state-of-the art library and archive in the garden of Lambeth Palace, home of the Archbishop of Canterbury.

New Music School - Kings College School

Sir Michael Hopkins is the doyen of British architecture. He and his wife, Patty, formed their practice 45 years ago and it’s still going strong. Among its latest projects is a choir school in Wimbledon, overseen by senior architect Mike Taylor, which perfectly illustrates the attention to detail and materiality the Hopkins’ have made their trademark.

Concert Hall - Andermatt

For the Swiss-British architect Christina Seilern it felt like going home; a commission to create a world-class concert hall in the Swiss Alps. It’s all part of the regeneration of Andermatt, a garrison-town abandoned by the military but now being brought back to live by an Egyptian developer.

Island Rest

RIBA award-winning Swedish architect Magnus Strom has made the UK his home and brought with him a new take on Mid-century Modern. He has become the leading designer of private houses that take their lead from the radical designs of the 1940s and 50s. And more than that, Strom has taken the use of computer graphics to an entirely new level – the modern version of the art of architecture.

Holy Trinity Church

When the Russian Orthodox Church commissioned a new cathedral in Paris, on the banks of the Seine, they turned to architect Jean-Michael Wilmotte. He has given them a spectacular building, its golden onion domes contrasting with its neighbour the Eiffel Tower. The new cathedral is estimated to have cost 100 million euros. It’s also been controversial, seen by critics as an attempt by Moscow to project itself as a powerful, religious country.

Southern Cross Station

It won the Lubetkin Prize and introduced the award-winning designs of the veteran British architect Sir Nicholas Grimshaw to Australia. And it is vast - filling an entire city block. But Grimshaw has form on railway stations; he was the man who designed Waterloo International.

Paris Law Courts

Italian architect Renzo Piano lives in Paris and has just completed the remarkable Palais de Justice. It is almost as striking as the Pompidou Centre which Piano and Richard Rogers created in 1974. Piano, a Pritzker Prize winner, is a veteran of European architects, noted for buildings such as the New York Times headquarters in Manhattan and The Shard in London.


Delayed by a year because of the Coronavirus pandemic, Expo 2020 is ready and waiting. In the city built on sand, 190 pavilions take us back to the future, not only in their contents but in their cutting-edge design; from the Mobility Pavilion by the practice of British super-architect Lord Foster…to the Sustainability Pavilion by Nicholas Grimshaw – whose team has been tackling climate change for years…all entered through carbon-fibre portals, based on traditional Islamic patterns, dreamt up in London by Asif Khan,