No. 1 Kingsway is located in central London at the junction of Aldwych and Kingsway. UK and European Investments Ltd. has redeveloped Crown House into a mixed development created behind the original retained facades to Kingsway and the Aldwych.
The Aldwych and Kingsway scheme was London County Council’s first large urban improvement scheme in central London. It was opened in 1905 and signalled the council’s vision of London as a modern city of tree-lined boulevards, office blocks and free-flowing traffic. Kingsway and the Aldwych represent the only attempt in London to recreate the effect of the grand avenues of Hausmann found in Paris.
Sculptor Joseph Harrington was commissioned to create a glass sculpture for display within the façade windows. The artist worked with David Collins Studio who have designed the interior to ensure that the work will have an impact from the street and will also work from within.
The artist was interested by the use of temporary supports and buttresses during the building renovation. Harrington’s sculpture highlights this transience and encapsulates this sense of transformation using a unique method known as the lost ice process which involves sculpting blocks of ice using salt erosion. A mould is then taken, recording the form in transition, before it is cast into glass. The finished sculpture captures the natural, fleeting effects of salt erosion in permanent solid glass form.
David Collins Studio (interior) / Sidell Gibson Architects