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2007, London, United Kingdom

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Studio Becher
London, United Kingdom

www.studiobecher.com/

Studio Becher Change this

Change thisLondon, United Kingdom
est. 2007, London

Peter Karl Becher

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Studio Becher was established in London in 2007 by founding director, Peter Karl Becher. The studio was set up as an international practice for architecture. The studio operates with Becher’s business philosophy that avoids specialisation, ensuring that the practice remains sensitive to innovation and bring inspiration from different influences.

Education and Early Career

Peter Karl Becher was born in 1968 in Heidelberg, Germany. He received his diploma in Architecture from the University of Applied Sciences in Karlsruhe, Germany in 1995. Gaining a postgraduate diploma in Conceptual Design in 1998 from the Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste - Städelschule - in Frankfurt under Enric Miralles, Peter Cook, Stan Allen, Mark Wigley, Wilfried Wang and Cecil Balmond. In 1998 he was granted a student scholarship at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) in Los Angeles under Joseph Giovannini and Mike Davis.

From 2003 to 2005 he worked for internationally renowned architectural practice Herzog & de Meuron on the Olympic Stadium Beijing - the Main Stadium for the Olympics 2008, in both Switzerland and China. As senior architect he managed the design of the twin layer membrane roof, primarily living in Beijing in 2004 and 2005.

From 2005 to 2007 he worked as project architect for Herzog & de Meuron (UK) Ltd on a mixed use project in East London combining residential highrise buildings with a medical centre. In 2007 Becher founded Studio Becher in London.

Philosophy

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Trying to define the practice's artistic position, Studio Becher is not interested in finding its own, globally applicable style, but believes in a local, distinctive and individual architecture. The context (a unity of spatial, material, historical and socio-economic factors) is hereby considered most important, so the project cannot be separated from it. The studio attempts to continuously reconsider its methods and develop new concepts rather than to reproduce a certain characteristic style.

One field of the studio's research is the development of new programmes by redefining and blending traditional architectural functions. The right mix of programme is understood as the recipe of an architecture that does not only function well, but that is also capable of initiating new ways to inhabit space as well as new building typologies. The studio is on a continuous quest to rediscover and/or reinvent lost or declining craft and does not hesitate to push for quality workmanship and skills.

Studio Becher is not interested in architectural form as 'aim', but form as 'result' of a thorough assessment of the project's identified challenges, followed by the development of a conceptual framework; the latter derived from precise analysis of a client's needs and interests and the opportunities of the site and surrounding context.

Hereby the studio attempts to stay at an abstract stage for as long as possible, that is, to develop a project to a large extent without the strait-jacket of a pre-conceived concrete form. In this respect the studio's approach is scientific-analytical rather than creative-imaginative in nature. This flexible and individual approach goes hand-in-hand with the studio's scepticism about 'ideas'. A scepticism that demands a strong idea is handled cautiously to avoid a project being dictated by imagination.

The studio is very interested in 'minimisation' (a process of compressing the essentials) as a contemporary medium of architecture, but rejects 'reduction' (a process of simplification, of making something banal). However, as minimisation requires complexity as an opposite pole, one of the studio's major research topics is on how to achieve a maximum of complexity with a minimum of means, resources and environmental impact. This also includes minimisation of interior-spatial sensation by which the studio hopes to gain a so to speak de-informative effect in its architecture, this is an alternative concept to the common 'event architecture'.

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