As you’re probably aware 2016 is the year of Innovation, Architecture and Design, it’s the only year-long festival celebrating the international built environment, design and innovation, part of which the Cities Expo we’ve been covering on the Mound. On Friday we were privileged to meet with Architects Robb Mcrae and Tamsin Cunningham at their exhibitions ‘Edinburgh Too’ and ‘Peripheries and Outlines’.
18 months ago, Robb Mcrae, architect, photographer and lecturer at Edinburgh College of Art, had an idea to set up an Architecture Fringe. He floated the idea on social media, seven tweets later, a series of mini events and a period of six months creating awareness and gathering feedback he took on challenge of Co-producer of the ArchiFringe.
It’s an independent, self funded festival, with 60 contributors and 29 events all over Scotland – a fantastic festival showcasing ideas and innovative solutions, on a local level.
Robb’s exhibition ‘Edinburgh Too’ was on at Gayfield Creative Spaces gallery for a few days and is now moving onto Glasgow from 15 – 17 July at new Glasgow Society. The exhibition displays photographic pieces, highlighting the residential built environment outside of the Edinburgh World Heritage site.
The images showcased the diverse aesthetics in the wider city context, challenging perceptions of the reality of living in a historic city. As Robb said, “In Scotland there is prevalence for connection to other people, to community through semi-detached and apartment living also, their formation as free-flowing streets and not cul-de sacs adds to the public realm of the city and security, resulting in attractive neighbourhoods.”
His next project will be looking at Castlerock, the foundation before the existence of the city. He hopes to compile his work in a book so if you missed the exhibition keep your eye out for it.
Tamsin Cunningham, Architect and Artist, showcased her exhibition ‘Peripheries and Outlines’. Speaking with Tamsin was inspirational, her work offered the viewer a clear message of repetition, of form and ultimately connection. Art is Tamsin’s therapeutic past time. It reflects daily insight into the physical and sociological ideals within the city, gained through her profession as an Architect. Tamsin noted that, “Common threads through and Robb and my own exhibitions are finding ways to explore discourse through architecture using different mediums and realising the points of connectivity between culture and community.”
We asked what’s next for Tamsin?
A project in collaboration with St. Andrews University looking at the issue of community engagement in Planning, researching and developing possible solutions for reinventing public consultation, how to make it more engaging, efficient and effective. This is interesting for us, with the Old and New Towns Management Plan consultation taking place at the moment. She’s also working with Edinburgh World Heritage Trust on the 12 closes project, exploring the emotional connection between people and their place.
Meeting Robb and Tamsin was great!
Katie and Luke