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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
19th February 1915 Comedian Dick Emery was born in Bloomsbury, London.
19th February 1897 Charles Blondin, French tightrope walker and acrobat died from diabetes in Ealing.
19th February 1838 Jane Alsop's terrifying encounter with Spring Heeled Jack.
19th February 1401 William Sawtree, 1st English religious martyr, burned in London
Alain's Special Building
Author Alain de Botton finds this building an inspiration
Location: Creekside, SE8 3DZ
Description: Author Alain de Botton has revealed his favourite structures in the United Kingdom...and this is one.
The 'Laban Dance Centre' in Deptford is one of the two buildings in the UK designed by the fabulous Swiss duo Herzog and de Meuron (the other is the Tate Modern).
The pair started off as cool modernists but abandoned the austerity of modernism and are taking a more playful route.
Laban, a dance conservatoire in southeast London, is an example of the new interest in ornamentation and prettiness. It's a remarkably delicate looking building.
The walls are made of translucent glass and are lined with coloured lights, so that it's like looking at a box of sweets through a frosted glass jar. Day or night, the light washes out from the building on to the surrounding grey landscape.
Architects like Herzog and de Meuron seem to be rediscovering the idea that buildings should be playful and beautiful, as well as functional and efficient.
Tagged in this Tour: London in 4 days