Sydney Opera House, With Jørn Utzon Centre Pompidou, Paris, With Renzo Piano & Richard Rogers Centre Pompidou, Paris, With Renzo Piano & Richard Rogers Prototype Car For Fiat, With Renzo Piano

About this talk

Running time: 30 minutes

The late Peter Rice liked the title by which he was known in France, "géomètre", for he was as much a thinker and strategist as an engineer. He began his professional career with Ove Arup & Partners working on Sydney Opera House, and later formed part of the team that won the competition for the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Since then he has collaborated with Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers (see Genesis Of The New Lloyd's Underwriting Room and People Places) as well as, briefly, with Frei Otto (see Self-Designing Structures), and recently with Martin Francis and Ian Ritchie (see Objectives & Concepts) at La Villette.

He has always been interested in the scale and detail of a building, detailing being a way of breaking down scale. With Piano (see Culturalising Today's Technology and New York Times Building & The Shard) he had the object of exploring the whole building process; also of working outside the building industry, for example investigating what a Fiat car might be like in the 1990s. He explored the extent to which computers and software technology can be used to predict and control the performance of a building, and the way in which different materials are expressed and how this influences their use in buildings - cast iron, steel, concrete, ferro-cement, glass, polyesters and plastics, polycarbonate. By continuing to experiment with different materials he hoped to maintain his inventiveness and avoid becoming repetitive as a designer.

Please note that a transcript of this talk is available - please contact us for further details.

Peter Rice

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