What Do Buildings Do All Day?
by Story, Building
September 1, 2022 4:06 am
An architecture and design podcast made in Ireland – Buildings are everywhere and right now we have never been more aware of the built world around us. But what are the stories of our buildings – who designs them, who pays for them, who uses them, what of their architecture – why do some buildings survive and other buildings die and why do some buildings become sites of protest or others get attached to our very identities? In this podcast host Emmett Scanlon speaks to a range of people about architecture and the buildings that matter to them.
In this episode we talk to Valerie Mulvin. The podcast is part of the Temple Bar 30 Series, an ongoing recording project with members of Group 91. Back in the 1980s a group of young and eager architects began working together in a loose collective, anxious to make things happen in Dublin city. By 1991, this group formalised as Group 91 and contained among others, Shelley McNamra, Yvonne Farrell (Grafton Architects), John Tuomey and Sheila O Donnell, Mc Cullough Mulvin architects and McGarry NiEanaigh. Valerie was part of G91 with Niall McCullough, who died in 2022. As practitioners and writers in and of architecture, Niall and Valerie have published since very early in their career. The podcast begins then, with Valerie reflecting on how and why the desire to research, write and publish came from and how she and Niall sustained this across their entire career. Valerie has just published Approximate Formality: Morphology of Irish Towns to public and critical acclaim and she is now working to complete a book underway by Niall before his death. With a mood and tone of reflection and optimism, Valerie looks back at how she and Niall became involved in G91, and their early research and study trips, their meetings with Aldo Rossi and their first book A Lost Tradition, all of which fundamentally formed their lives in architecture. She reflects too on the impact and legacy of the Temple Bar project, on Dublin, culture, policy and their own individual practice.
The music is by Sinead Finnegan and is played by The Delmaine String Quartet. The podcast was recorded live at Valerie’s home in August 2022.
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