The Cohen Quad: Collegiate Architecture as Future Heritage

2017 London Festival of Architecture Talk

Thu 22 Jun 2017

Entry is on a ‘first come, first served’ basis; please arrive promptly to secure a place.

Embankment Galleries
South Wing

In a rare public talk and Q&A session, Alison Brooks will be sharing the ideals and design approach behind the newest building to emerge on the Oxford city skyline; the Exeter College Cohen Quad.

Alison Brooks Architects’ new campus is due for completion later this year, making it the first complete College commissioned by the University of Oxford since Powell & Moya’s 1974 Wolfson College.

The Cohen Quad is a 21st century reinvention of the collegiate quadrangle, the basis of Oxford’s academic and urban fabric.  Weaving together themes of collective memory, spatial experimentation, and the contemporary narrative of the city, the talk also addresses the architect’s role in creating generous, humane and uplifting platforms for social exchange.

The design of the new quad is based on three key concepts: the journey, places of gathering, and the qualities of home. These concepts are embedded in the formal layout of the building, the variety of its gathering spaces, and the expression of shelter represented by its shimmering, curved stainless steel roof. Fundamentally, the 6,000m2 Cohen Quad offers a new institutional model for education and creativity. At the heart of this lies the Learning Commons; its multi-layered spaces speaking of a future where socialising, eating, drinking, studying and teaching will merge and evolve in a multitude of ways.

Entry is on a ‘first come, first served’ basis; please arrive promptly to secure a place.

This event is part of the 2017 London Festival of Architecture.