What is Architecture 00?
Architecture 00 is one of the leading multidisciplinary firms in architectural business based in London, United Kingdom. The firm was established in 2005 and has been incomparable since then. It has spread its wings in varied fields from Urban design to conservation research. The firm was established by two enthusiastic architects, Indy Johar and David Saxby. They now work with a large team of professionals holding expertise in different fields. Their projects are a wide variety of robust social and individual collaborative ranging from education spaces, enterprise centres, co-working spaces, and self-led housing master plans to ultra-low-energy residential new build and refurbishment.
Architecture 00’s works include projects like The Civic Square, Southhall Manor, ADA, etc. Their projects respond to social and civic perspectives with a plan of uplifting society in a sustainable way. One example of such a project is the Foundry.
The Foundry: Social Justice Centre
The center aims to provide a flexible workspace for institutions working in social justice and human rights, along with events space and a community learning resource. The project was proposed in a Shoe Factory land as a proposal for adaptive reuse of the factory building, providing the areas for the social cause. As the building was to cater to a user group involved in social practices, the design language was kept socially responsible and inviting. Glass was used instead of rolling shutters to indicate ‘trust’ in the organization and ask people for the cause. Along with maintaining a low budget, the design was made sustainable both environmentally and socially.
Such responsive designs can be noticed in all the projects taken up by Architecture 00. Their promising, holistic, and innovative approach towards design has led them back to three RIBA Building of the year awards for different works like the SOAR Works, Manor Works, and the Foundry. All of their jobs have a profound impact on the communities that occupy their buildings.
Zero zero is a collaborative studio that includes architects, strategic designers, programmers, social scientists, economists, and urban designers practising design beyond its traditional borders. It is an initiative started by the two architects to uplift the social economy and serve society for a better tomorrow. The studio is based on architectural design and branches out into various initiatives like the Open desk and Open Systems Lab.
Philosophy and strategy
While the mainstream architectural studios focus on conventional design strategies, Architecture 00 undertakes a broader range of activities to shape place and livelihood. The other initiatives by the firm reinforce their idea to cater to different perspectives. For example, the Dark Matter Labs team creatively takes care of the underpinning economic and regulatory structures. The Opendesk spin-out uses open-source technology to help individuals create a table to work or dine at for themselves. Architecture 00’s broad remit is in between these enterprises.
The mantra for 00’s growth is the multi-functionality in their design approach, including various initiatives to facilitate the firm’s development and benefit society. Their programs include Open desk, which is a workshop providing furniture solutions made locally. Architecture 00 has also pioneered open-source architecture by Wikihouse through a computerized technology that enables people to construct their spaces as per their requirements with readily available materials.
The firm claims that open-source architecture would never be able to compete with what architects create, yet they have started the initiative to help people get solutions effortlessly whenever they require. Other collaboratives under the 00 mission include Impact hubs that are a collective platform to bring about change areas of need. The other two include Studio weave, an exploratory studio, and Dark matter Laboratories, a strategic discovery, design, and development lab working to spread awareness and change society in response to technological innovation and climate breakdown.
Architecture 00: Not a Practice, but a Value System
Architecture 00 is an accomplished practice and a leading firm, setting an example for all of us young architects of how an approach should be. The firm’s unique selling point is its consideration for society in its designs. David Saxby, the firm’s co-founder, says that they try to empower people through their designs both literally and metaphorically. They are the changemakers who are working towards making society a better place to live. Indy Johar, in one of his talks, mentions the importance of civic growth to them. They focus on giving back to society and not just follow the rich getting richer, leap. Besides the idea, architecture 00 also has a large team of working professionals having expertise in different areas who come together to bring about the change.
Their motto and philosophy are deeply instilled with their values, and that is evident in their practice. Architecture 00 is an impactful practice and is growing because of its responses and solutions to address the social and environmental issues in today’s world scenario.
Architecture 00. (n.d.). About. [online] Available at: https://www.architecture00.net/about.
Contributor, A.J. (2020). Architecture 00: “Our designs respond to a diversity of perspectives.” [online] The Architects’ Journal. Available at: https://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/practice/architecture00-our-designs-for-buildings-respond-to-a-diversity-of-perspectives [Accessed 8 Aug. 2021].
TEDx Talks (2015). Social innovation in the real world – from silos to systems | Indy Johar | TEDxOxbridge. YouTube. Available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oHnwq2F6204 [Accessed 10 August 2021].