A new office, studio and archive store for the photographer, Juergen Teller on a 60m long by 8m wide site that had been a builder's offices. There are three buildings linked by two courtyards, offices on the street frontage, photography studio between the courtyards and at the rear a building with a kitchen and other private support spaces.
The structure is exposed reinforced concrete floor and roof slabs supported on the fair-faced concrete blockwork inner leaf of a cavity wall with a highly insulated cavity and a board-marked concrete outer leaf.
After discussions between the design team, and experience from trials, self-compacting concrete was chosen for the superstructure. The different formwork finishes include: 75mm-wide rough sawn Douglas fir board externally, with each board prepared by hand on-site, roughened with a wire brush, and pre-treated with a cement wash; and MDO phenolic ply internally, producing a matt concrete surface.
The most daring structure is the central column-free studio, with northlight rooflights supported by 100mm slender in-situ beams to diffuse light into the space, and full-width glazing at each end giving views onto each courtyard. The only elements providing lateral stability are two slender concrete staircases, designed as diagonal push-pull props; this design contributes greatly to the elegance of the building. The stairs make a positive contribution to the structure, rather than being a weight to be supported as often viewed by structural engineers, with their heavily reinforced top and bottom connections concealed within the concrete profile.