Grafton Architects will deliver a keynote address at the 2014 RIAI Annual Conference, which takes place from 12-13 October in the RDS. Grafton Architects will discuss recent competition and award-winning work, many projects of which are being realised abroad – from Lima to Toulouse.
Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara co-founded Grafton Architects in 1978 having graduated from University College Dublin in 1974. Fellows of the RIAI, International Honorary Fellows of the RIBA and elected members of Aosdána, the eminent Irish Art organization. Teachers at the School of Architecture at University College Dublin from 1976 to 2002, they have been visiting professors at EPFL, Lausanne 2010 –2011, at Accademia di Archittettura, Mendrisio, 2008- 2010, where they were appointed as full professors in 2013. They held the Kenzo Tange chair at GSD Harvard in 2010 and the Louis Kahn chair at Yale in the Fall of 2011. They are founder members of Group 91, the architects’ collaborative responsible for the urban re-generation of Dublin’s cultural quarter of Temple Bar.
Grafton Architects were invited to show in the Italian Pavilion, as part of the Venice Biennale ‘Next’ in 2002, exhibited in the Irish group exhibition, The Lives of Spaces, at the Venice Biennale 2010 and won the Silver Lion Award at the Venice Biennale Common Ground exhibition 2012. The practice has been shortlisted for a number of international competitions including the New Mackintosh School of Art, Glasgow, 2009, The London School of Economics 2013, Dublin City Library Parnell Square 2014, and the new headquarters for the Electricity Supply Board in Dublin in 2010, which they won with OMP architects. Grafton Architects were winners of both the World Building of the Year Award in 2008 for the Bocconi University project in Milan. The Bocconi project was one of the five finalists for the Mies Van Der Rohe Prize 2009 and in the Building for Brussels Exhibition 2010. The Department of Finance building in Dublin’s historic centre won the British Civic Trust award in 2009 together with the AAI Special Award 2009. Recently completed Medical School and Student Accommodation, at the University of Limerick, was shortlisted for the Stirling Prize 2013.
Current Grafton Architects projects include The School of Economics for the University of Toulouse 1 Capitol, the New Campus UTEC University in Lima, both now under construction, Institut Mines Telecom University Building, Paris Saclay, Town House Building, Kingston University London, all won by international competition.
The conference will also mark the RIAI’s 175th celebrations with contributions from Cathal O’Neill, Noel Dowley and Shane O’Toole. The conference themes have been developed by the RIAI with input from a broad-based committee of members to reflect continual changes in architectural culture and the expansive experience within the profession. Topics will range from emerging architects to the business of architecture, as well as communication, tendering, education, law, economy, urbanism and other ways of practicing.