Award-winning architect David Chipperfield co-hosts a Euromaxx Special

Award-winning architect David Chipperfield co-hosts a Euromaxx Special



Berlin Germany's capital and probably also the uncrowned capital of construction sites but one world-famous architect has been involved in some very important projects hi everyone and welcome to this very special edition of Euro Max coming to you from the heart of Berlin today we are featuring one of the world's leading architects Sir David Chipperfield so let's go inside and meet him and here he is David Chipperfield thank you so much for having us today it's a pleasure to meet you thank you and you've also helped us put together today's programme so we thank you for that as well okay first we know Berlin is a base for you I can't help but asking how's your German terrible after so many years well everyone here speaks English as well Joan you're trying to speak try and use it in the shop and everyone just realized you in English especially right here in the center is Vernon is above Oh from that absolutely is okay with some talk about your career path how you chose architecture I mean for you was there a Eureka moment a defining moment or did architecture choose you know I grew up in the farm in the country I mean I grew up on the phone and I think my first passion was to be with animals and to be a vet or something like that mhm my father also bought some buildings and renovated them and I worked on those with him and so as I don't know it sort of became interested in in architecture and I I wasn't great at school but I had a really good art teacher really you know one of those teachers that you know we all dream of that you know spired you inspires you and looks after you and you know you know and I was good in the art room and I sort of hit a little bit in the art room it was my sanctuary and I think he was very he was very important sort of encouraging me now I'd say it's quite an encouragement you have offices pretty much all over the world you have one here London Milan Shanghai some 300 staff dozens of projects every year how much of the the job especially as an architect and designing things how much is in your hands and how much do you delegate to other people i delegate an enormous amount you know I think architecture is is not a singular activity certainly not now if it ever was I mean the image of the you know the creative artist staying up at night with a bottle of whiskey and a and drawing you know I don't think that exists anymore I think the world you know the the nature of our projects our nature of how we work is highly collaborative so you know designing buildings is one thing designing a structure designing an office is nearly more important you know how do you create an environment a creative environment with within which people can flourish and take responsibilities and at the same time you know how do how do you hold the bits together you know I mean it's it's important that we have a an approach and attitude so that's my responsibility as to sort of you know from my farming background I suppose you know keeping all the animals in the field stopping them we want to take a closer look at some of your lifetime achievements David Chipperfield is no doubt one of the world's most esteem architects let's take a look at some of his work so far Berlin's neue national gallery by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe ah it's a shining example of modernist design now it's covered over for renovations David Chipperfield architectural firm is in charge ideally if we do our work well you will not know that we've done anything then Meyer national gallery was opened in 1968 now 50 years later Mies van der Rohe is grandson joins David Chipperfield for the tradesmen's building party he'll be serving as a consultant during the renovation Chipperfield is tough you can't go home does Chipperfield hasn't become known so much for restoring the old landmark buildings to their original condition more for incorporating the history the life story of the building and bringing it out their lives love this keyboardist myth I Amba seat under either – there's David Chipperfield constantly on the go between his four officers around Europe and in Shanghai he studied in London and started his own architectural firm in 1985 his restoration of Berlin's neues Museum brought his international breakthrough after 10 years of construction work the neues museum was reopened in 2009 David Chipperfield has also created entirely new museums like the hip worth Wakefield gallery in England and the who makes Museum in Mexico City his timeless architecture as in Barden Wittenberg's Carmen vert forum is simple straightforward open and unobtrusive this cemetery chapel in in Ogawa Japan blends elegantly into its natural surroundings David Chipperfield has been knighted and bestowed with many accolades the Mies van der Rohe award among them in 2012 he curated the Venice Biennale of architecture in 2013 he was awarded the prestigious premium Imperiale for its two hundred and fiftieth birthday last May London's Royal Academy of Arts got an overhaul from David Chipperfield including a new second entrance and two new rooms that restructured the interior and now it has an auditorium as well one of the reasons he was appointed was the enormous success of the noise Museum in Berlin which I remember doing the trip with David and we appointed him he was completely the right figure partly because he's held in great esteem by his fellow academician architects here but also that he has this very light touch that enables you to combine the contemporary and the historical this year David Chipperfield firm also completed a number of new buildings such as the headquarters of a cosmetics company in South Korea Berlin's neue Knutson art gallery is completely gutted for now but in the end the architects signature will hardly be recognizable it may well just be an instance of British understatement David Chipperfield Berlin office is a modern complex a comfortable atmosphere for his employees so here we are in your Berlin office you've been here since 1997 why Berlin I'm very simple we won a competition for the restoration reconstruction of the noise museum this was a super complicated project both technically programmatically politically even socially so it was a project which you could not do a distance I mean it was a project that we really had to be on the ground and the office began with a small cabin on the site outside of the building so how has Berlin developed architectural since you first arrived the biggest change is I would say in recent years is the the increased value of the city and the fact that the rest of the world has much to the surprise of the Berliners have decided that you know Berlin is a place to be and people have moved here in the beginning there was not huge investments and I would say interesting the city changed a lot because it's a place where a young people wanted to come but now what's happening is investments coming right now you're British and we know that the UK is in intense negotiations right now over leaving the EU how does brexit affect you personally well let's start from a professional point of view I'm not sure I mean we have offices here we have offices in Milan so we could say we could pretend that it's not such a big issue and on the ground it is a problem because we have a lot of EU Nationals in our London office nearly 50% I think the way that they've been treated is is terrible and I would say personally it's demoralizing I think that it's you wake up every morning wishing it was a bad dream and we should it's a very negative you feel like you're you're you've gone into reverse gear you know I mean you know I was born in 153 somehow you always have the feeling that things progressed and now you have the feeling that brexit is a sort of dead end so on the flip side of that back in Berlin which is definitely progressing moving forward your buildings can be found throughout the city how do you approach these projects that are so deeply rooted in German history what I suppose not his museum was that was was our lesson was you know was I grounding in this discussion and we couldn't have had a you know a more profound you know being thrown into the deep end of this discussion but I think it I think we embraced we I mean the simple simple answer is to Britain embrace it and enjoy it and and in a way the fact that things are so meaningful but in Berlin everything means something you know it's a city vents with history and you know the anecdote is of course that all cities have history and berlin has too much and and of course that's something which we try to integrate into our considerations alright well we want to take a closer look at the indelible mark that you have left on Berlin's famous museum Island five major museums are crowded onto Berlin's so-called Museum island in the river spray they are the altars Museum which houses the collection of classical antiquities the altar Nacional galleries showcasing 19th century art the neues museum which counts the bust of Egyptian Queen Nefertiti among its collection the Pergamon Museum currently undergoing renovation with its famous Pergamon altar and the border museum which boasts an impressive collection of sculptures each year more than 2 million people visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site I can do more say okay we really liked so many museums being in such close proximity to each other here mucho knowing Gonzalo was did only twice so far like one of them was this program man and that the one was the Greek history I think I like the Greek history Germany gather a lot of Treasuries from other countries so it it will be very interesting to me the neues or new museum was heavily damaged in World War two and stood in ruins for many decades in 2003 the team around British architect David Chipperfield began major restoration work on it though at first not everyone appreciated his plan to combine historical and modern elements today however his work is celebrated as an impressive architectural achievement David Chipperfield started on this project in 1999 his philosophy was to respect the ruin and not cover up the marks left by history he wanted to restore and carefully preserve this historical building while sensitively complimenting it with modern elements and it was aboard some so again some would say Morden and Thornton chipper fields architecture firm developed the master plan for the overhaul of Berlin's museum Island and also draw up plans for Berlin's brand-new James Simon gallery it's set to open its doors in the summer of 2019 and it's to serve as the entrance building and Visitors Center for museum Island different for you sir right now the five museums are like five friends sitting at one table but with their backs to each other the James C Mon gallery will link the open spaces and museums with each other amid Amon Chipperfield also worked on buildings near museum Island such as the gallery housed on the coop for carbon canal and the museum Island Forum on the opposite bank of the river play the British architect has certainly left his mark on Berlin's historical city center so these are monumental sights on museum Island which project was the most challenging both were challenging nervously and one was working with a with a ruin the other was the challenge of building a new building on you know in a place where to bring modern architecture is very difficult I suppose noise museum was was more challenging was more complex than dinner night and I think it was much more in the public view and public consciousness and it was part of a very strong debate and I think it was also more connected with history this public debate surrounding the noise museum did it shake your confidence at all or change your plans um no I don't think so I think that architects have to explain themselves you know I think it's it's incumbent on us I mean I think that sometimes the profession has a sort of sense of entitlement I think because I've always worked in foreign places I mean my very first projects were in Japan I never felt entitled in a way and therefore you you have to sort of respect the responsibility that you've been given so as in English or as a foreign architect doesn't matter whether in English or not I mean to to be given this incredible cultural responsibility is it is it is a very complex you know thing and therefore it's not it's not about what you think it's about how you can can gather thoughts and ideas and give them shape and did you have to cut through a lot of red tape German notorious red tape briefly on the whole I rather like red tape I mean it's a you know I mean I would say brexit is about getting rid of this red tape because the the anglo-saxon culture thinks of enterprise works better without red tape but red tape is there for a reason often as well I mean yeah maybe this a few layers too much sometimes but the principle of red tape is not wrong so you not only have a pension for Berlin you also have a connection to Galicia in Spain what draws you to this region accidentally we went there twenty-five years ago with three small children and have been going there ever since and built a house and I think it's some you know I mean we always use words in a very crude way but it's you know it's unspoiled which of course one can say that about a lot of places on the other hand I would say that there's a you know another terrible world it's very real it's it's a poor area in many ways but actually it's a very rich area in terms of its its landscape its way of life and I think for us in the family it's been fantastic to be back into you know a non touristic community when it's not a touristic area and therefore to spend your holidays in them that's called it a more real environment has been important for the children this month well Galicia also has a rich cultural history so we want to take a closer look at why our guests spend so much time there the region of Galicia in northwestern Spain is famous mainly for santiago de compostela a destination for pilgrims from all over the world breathtaking views historic sites and rugged coastlines with steep cliffs add up to a galicia of timeless beauty just over 40 kilometers southwest of Santiago de Compostela is the fishing village of Chora baedal with the typically Spanish terraced houses built right up to the bays edge one of them with its vast picture windows stands out from the rest British architect David Chipperfield designed and built it about 20 years ago as a vacation getaway he's been spending his summers here ever since the townspeople had to get used to the modern style pppoe fish was something different first people were curious to know what was being built in that little space but they were quite pleased with the result I think in particular the seamen who sailed past it actually envied mr. Chipperfield a little under a median the village lies inside the dunes of Cora bed Oh Park one of six natural parks in Galicia the wetlands and sand dunes provide a habitat for both domestic and migratory bird species the rear spacious RS trees that cut deep into the coastlines they shelter potatoes square rafts made of eucalyptus wood around 2,000 of them are anchored in the Rio de arouser alone ropes are hung on them to attract muscles which grow on them Alfredo Otero makes his daily rounds on his boat dr. Phil day but they growing muscles is a family business and very much a tradition it's passed on from generation to generation my grandparents started doing it and handed it on to my parents and uncle and they handed it on to my cousins and myself it takes the muscles about a year and a half to reach full size during that time the rope with the muscles attached is pulled aboard the boats again and again to pick the muscles off and clean them then they're spread to several more ropes with Nets the work is done partly by hand and partly mechanized the machines take on some of the physical work but the method of working and cultivating the muscles is exactly the same as it has been for 80 years alongside farming and fishing the cultivation of various kinds of muscles remains one of galicia economic mainstays its development in harmony with the natural habitats and the Galician culture is the primary objective of the fundation RIA founded by David Chipperfield in 2016 in addition we wish to create a place for people and institutions to meet producers universities and relevant authorities can get together and talk and participate in planning development for the future for a sustainable development of the region along with sustainability maintaining quality is critical this aspect is monitored throughout the processing and the proof is in the taste of a typical Galician mussel dish these can be had in any number of restaurants along the shores of the rear deer arouser staying within the complex we continue our conversation in a more relaxed location muscles are you a fan well I'm a fan of the whole ecology of that part of the world and we spent a long time there and as you saw from the reports about the foundation and I mean with we've become you know interested not only I mean I was asked to help on this sort of urban planning and and they're sort of architecture controlling them helping to control the architectural development but increasingly we've become involved in the whole environmental issue there and of course the quality of life is very much based on on sort of traditional farming fishing forestry and and that's become you know it's part of the the appeal of that area well why is it important to you does it have anything to do with your childhood you said you grew up on a farm you know going back to ecological issues I mean it's something it seems it's something quite personal for you as architects we try to engage with social purposes it's two things you know it's making things and it's also having having purpose trying to serve society in some way I mean this is at every architects overriding drive is to be useful to society as I am and increasingly it's it's more and more difficult and I found myself in Galicia where I can and be useful to society in some way I can bring my expertise as a sort of privileged outsider you get listened to maybe a bit more than you should be and and you can yeah you can you can try to help them protect those things which you think are important and and maybe overlooked that they overlooked and of course it is about how we relate to the world natural world in the built world and how we protect things and how we develop things now we've talked a lot about the things that you have created all this time is there anything on the list that you haven't built it yet that you'd like to do I think you know we are very much used to building singular buildings you know we we we benefit in enormous Li from building museums which are in a way privileged commissions I would say as I tried to say before you know as architects you're you're interested in not just a singular building but in the way architects architectures contribution to society and that's something we find very much missing and we'd like to be a bit more involved I guess in housing in schools in in in things which might contribute more to the fabric of society social fabric not just physical therapy so we know you have a lifetime of achievement behind you and you've marked a milestone birthday and with any birthday you get one wish what's yours oh this is always difficult I mean you have personal wishes and professional wishes but I suppose if I stood back these rather complicated days I would say first of all that my wish would be the bricks it never happens and I suppose if I'm allowed two bites of that I would say that Trump will resign okay well those are two wishes we'll see what happens anything if that comes true all right sir David Chipperfield we thank you so much for having us today here in one of your bases in Berlin and for putting the show together with us thank you very much and with that we have come to the end of the show from me and the rest of the crew here in Berlin and from Sir David Chipperfield we thank you for tuning in and you can always keep up on the show on all of our social media pages we'll see


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