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The Royal Institute of British Architects champions better buildings, communities and the environment through architecture and our members. We provide the standards, training, support and recognition that put our members – in the UK and overseas – at the peak of their profession.

With government, we work to improve the design quality of public buildings, new homes and new communities.

We also hold one of the largest and most important collections of architectural drawings, photographs and archives| in the world, and stage talks, exhibitions, events| and awards| (including the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize) that help people see their surroundings in a completely new way.

Venue Type:

Gallery, Architecture centre

Opening hours

Mon - Sat 10.00 - 17.00

Closed: Sunday

Admission charges

Exhibitions: Free admission
Talks and other events: £8.50/5.50 (unless otherwise stated)
Please see www.architecture.com

Getting there

The nearest station's are Regents Park and Great Portland Street station - we are also only a short walk from Oxford Circus.

Additional info

From exhibitions and talks to conferences and awards, the RIBA Trust advances architectural and design excellence through engagement with everyone.

Our Exhibitions, Talks programme and our Library and Collections are open to both the public as well as members. The Collections are based both at 66 Portland Place, London W1 and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London SW7 as part of the V&A+RIBA Architecture Partnership. Please see www.architecture.com or www.vam.ac.uk/architecture for full details of opening times, education resources and all other events.

For full listings of our events programme please visit www.architecture.com

The RIBA British Architectural Library is a Designated Collection of national importance.

It is the largest and most comprehensive resource in the UK for research and information on all aspects of architecture, and one of the finest collections of architectural material in the world, with over 4 million items.

It comprises the Sir Banister Fletcher Library of books and periodicals, the photographs collection, and the drawing and archives collection which is housed at the Victoria and Albert Museum, as part of the V&A+RIBA Architecture Partnership.

Collection details

Photography, Design, Archives, Architecture

Key artists and exhibits

  • Designated Collection including the greatest collection of the work of Andrea Palladio in the world, as well as the main archives of architects such as Edwin Lutyens and Erno Goldfinger.
Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Brutalist Playground

The Brutalist Playground

  • 10 June — 16 August 2015 *on now

This summer the RIBA presents The Brutalist Playground - an exhibition that is part sculpture, part architectural installation, which invites people of all ages to come and play, the Brutalist way. Occupying the entire Architecture Gallery, the immersive landscape is a new commission by Turner Prize nominated design and architecture collective Assemble and artist Simon Terrill. It explores the abstract concrete playgrounds that were designed as part of Brutalist housing estates in the mid-twentieth century, but which no longer exist. They became playgrounds unsuitable for play.

The exhibition draws on features from a number of London estates including Churchill Gardens, Pimlico; the Brunel Estate, Paddington and the Brownfield Estate in Poplar. The playgrounds were often made from concrete, cast into sculptural forms, which presented a distinct move away from previous playground design. They were envisaged as a key aspect of the estate layout and design and as such reflect the preoccupations and social theories of society at that time.

Assemble and Simon Terrill have drawn inspiration from photographs and visual material in the RIBA’s collections, documenting the playgrounds when they were newly built and in use. The exhibition installation will recreate visual elements from the playgrounds in reconstituted foam, creating an interactive, contemporary space where the viewer becomes participant and in this way completes the work. Archive images of the original playgrounds will be projected on the walls.

Assemble on the creation of the installation:
"The challenge of reconstructing elements of now forgotten Brutalist play structures within the RIBA gallery is an exciting opportunity for us to explore contemporary issues surrounding play, by looking at the often surreal objects from the past. Working closely with the RIBA collections and the artist Simon Terrill, the interpretation of these spaces has allowed us to ask questions around materiality and the nature of risk in play, while also giving greater visibility to the incredible original images of the playgrounds that can be found in the collections."

Artist Simon Terrill:
“The original playgrounds evoke a disappearing world of concrete mazes and windswept walkways. Like a Brechtian stage set rendered in concrete, they speak to a time before soft play and highly regulated public space. The recreation of these forms is a kind of inverted hyper-Brutalism. Playable structures reveling in the sharp edged bush hammered concrete forms they reference. The surreal edges of the Brutalist aesthetic are seen here in the form of the playground.”

The Brutalist Playground will be accompanied by a public programme of talks, debates and film screenings as well as workshops and events for families.

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly



Glashutte, France by Oswald Mathias Ungers, 1985 (c) Stefan Mueller

Palladian Design: The Good, the Bad and the Unexpected

  • 9 September 2015 — 9 January 2016

Andrea Palladio is the only architect who has given his name to a style – one that is still in use around the world after nearly 500 years. From the US Capitol to a 21st century Somerset cowshed Palladian Design: The Good, the Bad and the Unexpected introduces Palladio’s design principles and explores how they have been interpreted, copied and re-imagined across time and continents from his death in 1580 right up to the present day.

Through focusing on his legacy, this exhibition explores how British architects such as Inigo Jones and Lord Burlington turned Palladianism into a national style. It follows how the style was adopted in the design of houses, churches and political buildings around the world from New Delhi to Leningrad. It shows and 20th and 21st century architects have reinterpreted Palladio’s design principles to contemporary uses in unexpected ways.

The buildings featured may conform to, or challenge, ideas about Palladian architecture. Either way, their inclusion is intended to provoke debate and raise questions about the aesthetic, political and social legacy of an enduring style.

Suitable for

  • Family friendly



Events details are listed below. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all. For events that don't have a specific date see the 'Resources' tab above.

Point and Shoot Photography Workshops

  • 1 August 2015 11am-4pm

Saturday 25 July
Playful Photography
Taking our cue from The Brutalist Playground, this practical workshop will encourage you to explore the usefulness of play, movement and collaboration in relation to architectural photography. The workshop will include an on-site photo shoot at the Brunel Estate.

Saturday 1 August
Brutalist Architecture and Urban Play
Inspired by The Brutalist Playground, this practical workshop will investigate how photography can be used to both document and encourage new forms of play in, on and around Brutalist Architecture and urban structures. The workshop will include an on-site photo shoot at the Barbican Estate.

With Marianne Holm Hansen

Workshops run 11:00 – 16:00 and start at 66 Portland Place.

Suitable for

  • 18+


£30/£20 students. Booking online essential


Design Quest workshops for children aged 7-11 at the RIBA this Summer

  • 6 August 2015 11am-4pm

Monday 27 July
Ready, Set, Playground!
Invent and play games, create models and build your ideal playground in miniature, inspired by your own ideas and images from The Brutalist Playground.

Tuesday 28 July
Play it Cool
Play it cool in a series of games and challenges, map your journey throughout the RIBA building, and discover how to turn your steps into your own playground.

Thursday 6 August
Brutal geometrics
Explore how to use geometric shapes in new and different ways. By getting ideas from The Brutalist Playground and using 2D and 3D shapes, you will create your own play area.

Suitable for

  • 7-10
  • 11-13


£35 (£20 if eligible for free school meals). Booking online essential




Skill Up workshops for children aged 15-18 at the RIBA this Summer

  • 30 — 31 July 2015 11am-4pm *on now
  • 6 — 7 August 2015 11am-4pm

Monday 27 July
Using map-making strategies, architectural drawing and model-making, design wearable structures that hides us from view.

Thursday 30 July
Thinking about architecture? Develop your technical drawing skills through responding to a Brutalist themed brief.

Friday 31 July
Learn what makes a good portfolio, how to present your work stylishly and stand out from the crowd.

Thursday 6 August
In this hands-on workshop, make wire frame models inspired by Brutalist architecture.

Friday 7 August
Using a case study, you’ll assess a problem, come up with a solution of how to transform a space, and develop drawings and prototypes.

Suitable for

  • 16-17
  • 14-15


£35 (£20 if eligible for free school meals). Booking online essential




Design Day workshops for children aged 11-15 at the RIBA this Summer

  • 31 July 2015 11am-4pm
  • 5 August 2015 11am-4pm

Wednesday 29 July
Play Shape Move
Explore the array of designs in The Brutalist Playground and create your own large-scale, brilliantly-brutal designs using repeated shapes and patterns.

Friday 31 July
Design Day: Special edition! Architecture Hide and Seek
This workshop will use map-making strategies, architectural drawing and model-making to investigate how public space makes us behave and design wearable structures that hides us from view.

Wednesday 5 August
Plaster-Cast Playgrounds
Be inspired by The Brutalist Playground, learn new creative skills - designing, model making and painting - and take home your creation at the end of the day.

Suitable for

  • 11-13
  • 14-15


£35 (£20 if eligible for free school meals). Booking online essential




Day of Play

  • 8 August 2015 11am-5pm

Activities taking place include:

-With more activities to be confirmed soon.

Suitable for

  • Any age
  • Family friendly


All activities are free of charge, but registration is required.



Resources listed here may include websites, bookable tours and workshops, books, loan boxes and more. You may need to scroll down or click on headers to see them all.

How We Built Britain


Explore a thousand years of British architecture with this online exhibition of photographs, drawings, books, models and manuscripts from the RIBA British Architectural Library, brought to you by RIBA in association with the BBC.
Encounter the wonder of medieval cathedrals, Tudor prodigy houses, Georgian model villages, Scottish baronial castles, Victorian viaducts and 60s tower blocks. Follow the social, political and economic trends that have shaped the unique appearance of Britain's cities, towns and countryside.

Architects in Residence


Architects in Residence is designed to support architects working with teachers on school-based projects in both primary and secondary schools and sixth form colleges.
The resource provides a step-by-step guide to setting up a school based architecture and built environment project. The project model is based on a practitioner partnership between an architect and a teacher and is recognised as CPD for both. It supports both individual projects between a single practitioner and school and larger programmes.
Architects in Residence has been developed and piloted in schools by the RIBA Trust in partnership with Arts Inform, with support from CABE.


  • RIBA Trust
  • Arts Inform


  • RIBA Trust

Le Corbusier Full Resource Pack


This downloadable 20 page Full Pack provides a more in-depth outline through a question and answer format for teachers, illustrated with photos, relating the details of Le Corbusier's life and work. It is designed to assist in cross-curricular lesson planning through an exploration of architecture.

Le Corbusier Notes for Teachers


This pack, developed in partnership by Places Matter! and Barbican Education, is inspired by the Le Corbusier: The Art of Architecture exhibition, providing ideas for related work for students and addressing the following questions: Why was Le Corbusier so important? How can he inspire school pupils today? Was he a hero or a villain? How did his ideas change the world? What were the design ideas he proposed? How did his design philosophy evolve? In what ways are these relevant to our understanding the design of the built environment today?



A growing online database dedicated to providing you with exceptional and unique images from the collections of the British Architectural Library at the Royal Institute of British Architects, the world's most extensive visual archive devoted to architecture.
RIBApix covers world architecture of all periods together with related subjects such as interior design, landscape, topography, planning, construction and the decorative arts. Many of the images are also of social documentary importance.
All images on this site are copyright of the Royal Institute of British Architects, but low resolution copies may be downloaded for free for personal use or teaching purposes.

Getting there

The nearest station's are Regents Park and Great Portland Street station - we are also only a short walk from Oxford Circus.

66 Portland Place
Greater London






0207 580 5533


0207 255 1541

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.