Jeremy Till

Spatial Agency

A research project funded by AHRC done with Tatjana Schneider and Nishat Awan at the University of Sheffield, gathering together numerous examples of how to use architectural intelligence beyond the production of objects, and in particular in terms of social and political agency. As part of the project we curated the 2009 RIBA Research Symposium (and Jonathan Charley’s video piece on the site is wonderful), produced a book, a website & various articles, and edited two special issues one of field: the other of ARQ. The project was awarded the 2011 RIBA President’s Award for Outstanding University-based Research, making me the only person to have received this internationally important award three times.

Please Do Not Touch

Musings on Biennales and architectural exhibitions. Good opening! Light follow through.

Liquid Boundaries: UK Pavilion, 2013 Shenzhen Biennale

On the basis of a pitch written on an iPhone on the top of a mountain in Ethiopia, I was invited to curate the UK Pavilion at the 2013 Shenzhen Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. The eventual pavilion was curated, designed and produced by students and staff from Central Saint Martins, and took the theme of Liquid Boundaries - arguing the need to find ways through the hardening of space as it is being increasingly controlled, regulated and divided. The pavilion presented four films, each 129 seconds long (the average time someone spends in a national pavilion at the Venice Biennale), which interpreted briefs provided by four UK architects and spatial agents. All in their own way open up ways in which boundaries might be negotiated with, and in so doing a more democratic form of space emerges. More information, including a downloadable pamphlet and 'user manual', can be found on the Liquid Boundaries website.


A Happy Age

Rather a miserabilist piece, but gets in that fantastic Seneca quote: ‘Those were happy times before the days of architects.’

Glossing over the cracks

My response as to why giving the official government website 2013 Design of the Year was not so cool.

Six Inches of Power

My contribution to the collection of fantastic photographs by Lisa Barnard of the former Tory Party Headquarters. The book, Chateau Despair, is an extraordinary document of the tawdry environment that Margaret Thatcher and her cohorts conducted their business in. Though I say it myself, I like my writing here, spurred by Lisa's great work. Buy the book!

Cook Memorial Lecture: University of Manitoba

Architecture Depends

The Design of Scarcity

Lecture at Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam, that runs through the structure and argument of our book of the same title. The link is to the video, with my lecture on first. 

Constructed Scarcity

Very early thoughts from our Scarcity and Creativity project. Now looks rather crude.

Occupational Hazards: Architectural Review

A short think piece on the 2011 Occupation movement and its relevance to architecture.

Design after Design

This is the text of a short talk I did as part of the UAL Climate Emergency Network 5 day festival in September 2020. It picks up on some of the themes of Architecture After Architecture

Architecture after Architecture

This was my first Zoom lecture, delivered as part of the Architecture Foundation's excellent 100 Day Studio intiative during the 2020 COVID lockdown. The video is here , and the transcript linked to the title above. The lecture speculates as to where architecture might be in the face of the twin crises of climate and COVID, arguing that these challenge some of the fundaments on which the modern project of architecture has based itself. 

Three Myths and One Model

Originally commissioned by the RIBA, a piece on what might or might not constitute architectural research. Big in Spain.

Glossing over the cracks

My response as to why giving the official government website 2013 Design of the Year was not so cool.

People’s Research Council

A project with Helen Storey of the London College of Fashion and Tony Ryan of the University of Sheffield, arising out of their Free Radicals project. At heart a really good idea of diversifying the way that research is chosen, procured and delivered, allowing others beyond the academic circle to become involved in the processes and ideas of research. A report generously funded by the Wellcome Foundation sets out the stall. Now looking for ways of effecting it. 

Strong Margins

Short piece on Samuel Mockbee and the Rural Studio, trying to find the line between adulation and critique.

From Objects of Austerity to Processes of Scarcity

An essay based on a presentation to the Society of Architectural Historians, tracing various historical episodes of austerity.

Design: Duarte Carrilho da Graça & Philipp Sokolov