During the tours and Thinking Aloud, we’ve been talking a bit about buildings we like and I’ve found it hard to identify a personal favourite, however, today I visited The Natural History Museum in London and was reminded how much I love this building. In some ways it is similar to The Oxford Museum, which I also like, with its cathedral-like central hall and ornately carved columns, painted ceiling panels and terracotta panels.

(You can take a virtual tour of the Natural History Museum architecture at http://www.nhm.ac.uk/visit-us/history-architecture/architectural-tour/index.html)
While thinking about Mind Into Matter and reading a bit about contemporary architecture, it has dawned on me how much architecture is changing in the 21st century with revolutionary use of new materials and design techniques, and an emphasis on sustainability. One of the things I really enjoy about architecture in London is the way new and old exist so successfully side by side. I was amazed to visit the newly opened glass walled building which houses The Cocoon today, to step out of the ornate halls of the original building into the huge glass atrium of The Darwin Centre and travel up in the glass lift which gives fantastic new views of the exterior of the original building.

“Outside the Natural History Museum, the new Darwin Centre is shown here from the Wildlife Gardenadjacent to the historic Waterhouse building. it’s clear how the new building links the Grade I listed Victorian Waterhouse building and Museum gardens, bringing together the old, the organic and the new.” http://www.nhm.ac.uk/visit-us/history-architecture/architecture-darwin-centre/architectural-slideshow/index.html

Posted by Ryan Coleman on Friday 13 November 2009