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Young Vic Theatre    The Cut, London    2004

Architect: Haworth Tompkins.
Thom Gill was senior architect responsible for the facades.

The existing temporary venue for the renowned Young Vic Theatre on
London’s South Bank had outlived its intended lifespan by 20 years when
Haworth Tompkins won the commission to re-build their theatre. Retaining
the historic ‘butchers shop’ entry and famed in-the-round auditorium base,
a greatly enlarged facility was constructed. Despite being a new building,
great care was taken to respect the Young Vic's rough-shod spirit of
improvisation. The plan eschews tidiness in favour of colliding functional
geometries, exploiting awkward corners and sectional differences to rich
spatial effect. A broad palette of low-cost materials further break down the
building and prevent its reading as a single entity. Nowhere is this more
apparent than the facades, where expanded aluminum mesh, artist-painted
fibre-cement panels, bead-blasted concrete block, timber-framed glazing
and special profiled bricks create a vivid play of textures.

AIA / UK Award
British Construction Industry Building Award
Building Award : Building of the Year (Shortlist)
Chicago Athenaeum, International Architectural Award
Civic Trust Award
LEAF Public Building of the Year Award
RIBA Stirling Prize (Shortlist)
RIBA Award (London Region)
RIBA London Building of the Year
RIBA National Award
Structural Steel Design Award Merit
USITT Award with Merit

Photos: Philip Vile

Model showing theatre, studios and foyer spaces.

The auditorium facade panels were fibre-cement board individually hand-painted by artist Clem Crosby and set behind expanded aluminum mesh. This unique system was developed in collaboration with facade fabricator James & Taylor.

The facades are a material collage. Here aluminum mesh intersects with bead-blasted concrete block.

The 'wavy brick' facade was laid in adhesive bonds with alternate rows reversed.