The London Festival of Architecture 2008: Southwark and South Bank Hub

The London Festival of Architecture is a celebration and exploration of the city's buildings, streets and spaces, aimed at Londoners and visitors alike. The 2008 Festival ran from 20 June - 20 July and included street installations, exhibitions, guided walks, cycle rides, boat tours of the city's river and canals, parties, design workshops, debates and breakfast talks, across five key areas or 'Hubs'. The Southwark & South Bank Hub was curated by The Architecture Foundation from 9 to 13 July 2008.

From the River Thames to Elephant and Castle, and from London Eye to the Design Museum, the Southwark and South Bank Hub occupies a dynamic part of London. Traditionally seen as being on the other side of the Thames, the role of the area has shifted with the development of the South Bank and Bankside as London's major cultural quarter and expansion of the City's financial activity south of the river. Festival events and activities will explore the area's special qualities and question the conventional to generate fresh approaches to architecture.

Major architecture exhibitions will be taking place along the South Bank including the Hayward Gallery's 'Psycho Buildings: Architecture by Artists' and the Design Museum's Richard Rogers retrospective. For the first time, the Festival will bring together the cultural institutions along the River Thames for a special South Bank Late event.

Away from the river, amidst the Victorian railways, there remains a hinterland of hidden territories and spaces. This landscape presents an opportunity for a new vision of the city to be formed. The Bankside Urban Forest - a new public realm strategy by Witherford Watson Mann architects - will be the inspiration for a large scale installation by the French architecture collective EXYZT. It will create an active venue for events and debate bringing a fresh, immediate response to the Festival.

Anchoring the Hub, a programme of open studios, talks, tours and other events will take place around Elephant and Castle to explore the extraordinary amount of development that is taking place in this neighbourhood.

A one-day Urban Treasure Hunt will spread across the entire Hub to discover hidden spaces and some of the most exciting buildings the city has to offer. This will be accompanied by new walk and cycle maps with which to explore the architecture and public spaces in Southwark and the South Bank.

Sponsored by