Floating Ideas presents the opportunity to discover Peter Cook RA’s architectural thinking through a series of drawings. The display includes fantastical drawings created in the spirit of 1960s avant-garde architectural group Archigram, drawings submitted to competitions, and drawings of realised buildings. Clear to the viewer is Cook’s insatiable curiosity and keen observation of life, and his presentation of innovative architectural propositions that challenge convention and imagine new possibilities for buildings and cities. Comprised of over 60 works that Cook has submitted to the annual Summer Exhibition, the exhibition provides a snapshot into his early ideas, shows his evolving practice and highlights the collaborations which have energised the work.
Cook has submitted works regularly to the Summer Exhibition since the 1960s, seeing it as a valuable opportunity to put architectural ideas in front of a public. His first submission from 1964, a collaboration with the late Theo Crosby RA for Taylor Woodrow Design Group, detailed a proposal for a housing scheme in Fulham. Other early works on display include conceptual ideas such as Sponge Building and Arcadia, and competition proposals for buildings designed with Christine Hawley.
Since his election to the Royal Academy in 2003, Cook has submitted each year. These drawings, models and photographs include buildings now realised, such as projects with Gavin Robotham, CRAB studio, the law faculty for Vienna Business and Economics University, and the School of Architecture at Bond University, Australia.
The exhibition mark’s Cook’s 80th birthday and demonstrates how his energetic output of ideas continues to inspire.