The American Friends hosted a wonderful evening with Lord Palumbo speaking about his life in architecture at the stunning Sir Edwin Lutyens-designed the British Ambassador’s Residence in Washington DC on October 12th 2016.

Hosted by Sir Kim and Lady Darroch and moderated by Abraham Thomas, Lord Palumbo dazzled guests with his talk which included descriptions of architectural projects and achievements along with reminiscing about relationships with such architectural titans as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Berthold Lubetkin, Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier.

This presentation precedes RIBA’s Spring 2017 exhibition at the Architecture Gallery at 66 Portland Place, which will focus on the Mansion House Square scheme. Commissioned by Lord Palumbo in the early 1960s, Mies van der Rohe’s proposal for a 19-storey office building, public square and underground shopping centre in a conservation area of the City led to years of heated debate and a major planning inquiry in the 1980s. With the rejection of Mies’s tower in 1985, Palumbo commissioned James Stirling Michael Wilford and Associates to design an alternative scheme for the site, the postmodern No. 1 Poultry, which continues to occupy the site today.

The American Friends of the British Architectural Library would like to thank His Excellency, Sir Kim Darroch CMG, KCMG, Lady Darroch, Ms Amanda Downes, Lord Palumbo, Mr Abraham Thomas and Mrs Claire Cox for their incredible assistance with this event – we are very grateful.

Please join as a member if you don’t want to miss out on future events like this.

A selection of images from our visit to Washington DC in October 2016