The practice is particularly well known for its innovative arts projects. The original tiling has been retained and openings formed in a robust, unsentimental way. ‘On the Young Vic Theatre we spent a lot of time just sitting in performances and sitting in bars in the neighbourhood watching the world go by and understanding what the political and social microclimate was like.’
Steve Tompkins, Haworth Tompkins
Project: Young Vic Theatre redevelopment Location: London, UK Architect: Haworth Tompkins Date: 2006
The design project
Illuminated model. This thinking was further developed with several temporary buildings, such as the Almeida Theatre in Kings Cross, where an economic rough-and-readiness and the stage-set quality of some elements (lent by the client’s backstage crew fit-out), were both necessary and relished by architects, client and theatre-goers alike. Haworth Tompkins is an architectural practice based in London and established by Graham Haworth and Steve Tompkins. The original Young Vic Theatre was built around the shop, the sole survivor on the site of a WWII bomb. The productive nature of these visual, dramatic and musical arts organisations has inspired Haworth Tompkins to develop a design strategy of ‘provisional’ and robust architecture that suits the creative activities and life of these places. Both directors give lectures on their work and Steve Tompkins teaches at the University of Greenwich, London. Project: Young Vic Theatre redevelopment Location: London, UK Architect: Haworth Tompkins Date: 2006
Foyer viewed from the retained butcher’s shop. Several projects to adapt existing buildings, such as the Young Vic Theatre in London, have given Haworth Tompkins the opportunity to consider innovative construction methods, conceptual possibilities and the tactile effect of materials. As a result, Haworth Tompkins’ design process is focused on the possibilities inherent in the life of the building after construction rather than as an idealised and empty architectural shell.