'Architecture can be Avoided'
Some wag once opined that 'architects are the second oldest profession, only without the standards of the first'. Now there are occasional exceptions to this rule, but generally it holds true that they'll do whatever they're offered. I mentioned this once in conjunction with a Zaha Hadid interview where she essentially said that she'd rather be designing hospitals and schools than whimsical towers in Dubai. Well, according to today's papers she has just designed a school - a City Academy in Brixton, to be precise, funded as always with these operations by some dubious entrepeneur, free from any democratic control, and no doubt destined for the sorry fate back-door privatisations have tended to fall into.
This seems to be a pattern with any good, new public buildings in London, such as David Adjaye's great, Scheerbartian Whitechapel Library. You can't unreservedly enjoy it, because some bit of glaring Blairist idiocy will hit you - in the Library's case, the moniker 'Ideas Store' (imagine the focus group meeting on that one - no, library's a bit fusty, call it a store and people will come, you know like they do to Bluewater, sniff sniff) and its role in the closure of the Library at the Aldgate end, 'the university of the ghetto', which had a priceless collection of Jewish literature. As ever, the Corbusian question 'architecture or revolution' seems appropriate, if worth answering the other way round.