The AA Visiting School programme is divided in two distinct parts. There are the ‘London Schools’, based at the AA in Bedford Square and/or Hooke Park, Dorset, which are typically longer programmes that directly benefit from the AA’s vast London network and are supported by the AA’s state-of-the-art facilities and resources in the UK. Their counterpart, ‘Global Workshops’, are shorter creative design laboratories directed by current/past AA staff and graduates worldwide. All are supported by an extraordinary array of collaborators uniquely qualified to experiment on different agendas addressing some of today’s most pressing issues.
The Visiting School has expanded considerably over the last half decade, constantly ‘ducking-and-diving’ into new outposts. It now comprises more than 50 distinct programmes on five continents running over a full 12-month calendar. There is no way to summarise the imagination and experimentation in the school’s two parts, but you’ll see that the ‘London Schools’ alone include an immersive 15-week Semester Programme; the Visiting Teachers Programme, which for three weeks each year welcomes educators from around the world to our world at Bedford Square; DLab, which now operates between Bedford Square and Hooke Park to offer the latest technology and fabrication opportunities; and the wonderfully London-centric Summer School, which over the last decade has involved hundreds of students in completely re-imagining our metropolis – not forgetting other newer and shorter programmes, including Visioning Architecture and Campaigning Architecture at Bedford Square, and MakeLab and SummerMake at Hooke Park.
2012/13 sees not only the expansion of opportunities at many well-established ‘Global Workshops’ but the introduction of entirely new themes and programmes in Medellin, Taichung, Grenoble, Reykjavik and Ottawa, as well as an exciting new collaboration with Louis Vuitton at our Paris workshop. All of these featured programmes and many others can be discovered online or in the Visiting School prospectus published at the end of October.
The Big Symbol
Beijing, January – February 2013