The Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) has unveiled the winners of its inaugural Richard Rogers Fellowship. Namik Mackic, Maik Novotny, Jose Castillo, Saidee Springall, Shantel Blakely, and Dirk van den Heuvel will spend three months undertaking urban and architectural research at Richard Rogers’s seminal south London dwelling.
The class of fellows will be awarded free travel to London as well as $10,000 to aid their research. The residency program was made possible after Richard and his wife Ruth donated the house to the school in 2016. Situated in Wimbledon, the Grade II listed building was built in 1969 and commissioned by Rogers’s parents, Dada and William Nino Rogers. The colorful residence, regarded by many as a British modern masterpiece, emulates the U.S. West Coast vernacular of the time and features a prefabricated yellow steel structure which is made visible by a glazed facade.
“The spirit of the Fellowship is intended to carry forward and expand on Lord Rogers’s deep commitment to cities not as ends in themselves, but as a fundamental means of bettering human life,” said Mohsen Mostafavi, dean and Alexander and Victoria Wiley Professor of Design at Harvard GSD, in a press release. “At the GSD, our work is organized around the urgent issues cities are facing globally, a pedagogical approach requiring exploration and collaboration across disciplinary lines. We are very fortunate and excited about this opportunity to support, learn from, and promote such cross-disciplinary research internationally, in the context of London’s thriving architecture, design, and art communities and vast institutional resources.”
Rogers’s Wimbledon dwelling will now be used for research into areas that have been pivotal in the architect’s life and career. In doing so, questions pertaining to urbanism, sustainability, and how people use cities will be addressed. Projects from this year’s fellows will look at public and affordable housing; how food and cooking transform cities; and citizen-driven urban regeneration initiatives.