‘Memory’ revealed as London Festival of Architecture 2017 theme

The theme of the 2017 London Festival of Architecture will be ‘memory’, it has been announced. The theme will be explored through a wide range of events and activities when the London Festival of Architecture – Europe’s biggest annual architecture festival – returns on 1-30 June 2017.

Speaking following the reveal of the theme to supporters and festival partners at London City Hall, London Festival of Architecture Director Tamsie Thomson explained:

“Memory is such a rich theme for the London Festival of Architecture in 2017. The festival is all about participation, and we want participants to interpret it in many different ways. We are confident that 2017 will see another amazing festival that can inspire and engage the public, and give people a say on the future of London’s neighbourhoods and the city as a whole.

“London is a city of myriad layers, each infused with memory: of people, buildings, places and experiences. London’s built environment, with memories bound up within it, is fundamental to how people experience the city, and the starting point from which architects, developers and communities can address change.

“London’s built memories are never far from its present – living on in old place names, the City of London’s medieval street pattern, or London’s rich architectural heritage. Memory is fundamental to a sense of place: something that communities cherish in the face of change, and a tool for architects and developers as they achieve change and place further layers of activity and memory on top of all the others.

“Recent and future development at King’s Cross, Nine Elms and Smithfield Market are reminders of how memory is inextricably linked to character and placemaking. They show how architects, planners and developers need to proceed with care: aware that carelessness can obliterate cherished memories of London’s places, and alert to opportunities to harness memory in positive ways.”

“Our choice of ‘memory’ as a festival theme is for participants to interpret in any way they wish, and we are confident that people will be enthused by to create activities that are engaging, thought-provoking, challenging or fun. The London Festival of Architecture 2016 was our biggest festival yet, and we hope that 2017 will be bigger and better still.”

The call for entries for London Festival of Architecture 2017 will be made in early December, and the festival will run at venues across the capital from 1-30 June 2017.