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The RIAI Annual Review, Vol 6, 2015/16

Published: Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Now in its sixth year, the RIAI Annual Review, Irish Architecture, Volume 6 (2015/2016) offers a compelling look at contemporary Irish architecture and design and features award-winning buildings alongside essays, reviews and design competitions.

The book was launched on 17 November by Minister of State Gerald Nash, TD and Martin Colreavy, Principal Advisor, Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI). Also launching that evening was the exhibition 7 Hands - Inspiring Craft from West Cork, curated by Angela Brady, OBE, FRIAI, PPRIBA. The RIAI Annual Review was funded by the Government Policy on Architecture (DAHG) and the Year of Irish Design, ID2015.

The publication of the sixth volume of the RIAI Annual Review occurs between two auspicious dates – Ireland’s Year of Design 2015 and the 2016 centenary celebrations to mark the 1916 Easter Rising. The content of this book is therefore deliberately balanced between the theme of Nation Building and Ireland’s repositioning as a 21st century Design Island. In many of the featured built projects these dual themes are closely interwoven.  The specially commissioned essays in the Review respond to these dual themes: Dr. Ellen Rowley on ‘Nation Building’; Frank McDonald on the ‘Future of Irish Towns and Villages’; Prof. Alex Milton on ‘Taking Irish Design to the World’; Raymund Ryan and Nathalie Weadick on ‘New Horizon’, a global showcase of emerging Irish practices; Aoibheann Ni Mherain on the design legacy of the RIAI Gold Medal winning Birr Community School; and Paul Keogh on the challenges in the ‘Restoration and Re-use of Buildings’. We feature 17 award-winning buildings in thematic areas such as Nation Building (The LexIcon), Education (The Model School), Housing (Liberty House and House on a Tight Site), Leisure (Cricket Pavilion) and Restoration and Re-use (St Mel’s) – to name but a few highlights. Our ‘architect-in-focus’ is the late Robin Walker.

Launching the RIAI Annual Review, Minister for Business & Employment Ged Nash, TD said: "Like many others, I look forward every year to receiving a copy of the RIAI Annual Review. Now in its sixth year, this beautiful book raises awareness of quality architecture and the wider Irish construction sector. As part of my remit promoting ID2015, which part funded this book, I have been fortunate to meet some of our most inspiring architects featured in the annual review and see their work on the international stage in Chicago, London, Copenhagen and Stockholm."

Martin Colreavy, Principal Advisor, Built Heritage and Architectural Policy (DAHG) added: "Having the time to reflect, review and communicate on key architectural projects, as presented in the RIAI Annual Review series to date, is very important. It allows us collectively to constantly address and evaluate the immense importance that architecture makes at a national and local level – both from a creative, cultural and visual perspective but also as representative of the unique places we build, work and live.“

RIAI President Robin Mandal concluded: ”This RIAI Annual Review is the first of the second quintet of the record of the design talent, skills and collaborative endeavour of our profession. We can see the exceptional quality that architects have achieved in their projects through the most challenging of times, since the inception of the Review six years ago. The works and essays in this book capture a snapshot of the built culture in the last year as well as touching on some of the issues that form part of the critique of the world in which we live. They posit how we may better serve our communities, a theme which runs through all of the projects featured in this volume.”

Read the full President's statement on this link

The RIAI Annual Review is available at a cost of €20 from the RIAI and bookshops nationwide.

For media review copies and  information, please contact Brona King, RIAI Bookshop manager bking@riai.ie and Dr. Sandra O'Connell, Editor and RIAI Communications Manager, soconnel@riai.ie , T 01 6761703.

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