School of Art, Design and Fashion
Harris Building, HB118
+44 (0) 1772 89 3993
Subject Areas: Architecture
Professor Adrian Friend is an award winning architect, researcher and educator. In questioning the traditional role of the architect as the author of an architectural project my research seeks to initiate collaborative practice with clients and other consultants all of whom extend the architects’ authorship and contribute to new forms of emerging ways to practice as well as a construction ethic based more on the ‘workshop’ as the site of production and democratic practice.
He is research active in the Creative Practice Research Group.
Professor Adrian Friend is an architect, researcher and educator. Whilst Senior Tutor, Royal College of Art and lead scientist of the EU Marie Curie TRADERS research project, Friend headed the MA Architecture Live Project research repository delivering an annual student-led collaborative project with public bodies and industry sponsors such as the pop-up Helix Studio that was Highly Commended in the 2015 Wood Awards.
Friend has taught and lectured throughout the UK and was Studio Leader in Architecture at the University of Nottingham from 2004–11 and Course Leader in Architecture at Norwich University of the Arts from 2011–13 where he wrote a new course framework and
curriculum, returning the study of architecture to the city after a 50-year absence. Much of Friend’s research and pedagogy is shared with Phd students whom he actively supervises exploring relevant public themes and aspects of collaborative practice in Live Projects tested in proof of concepts designed and built by students.
His practice-based research on collaborative inter-disciplinary practices defines role of Maker Architects’ exploring the art of assembly and tactics that extend authorship through the workshop as a site of production in ‘hot-rodding’ by component designed, citizen build kits. Awarded an Innovate UK grant, ‘Flying Factory Autonomous Housing Construction’ (2015), for feasibility into multi-author prototypical systemised construction, Friend’s research was in partnership with the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC), High Value Manufacturing Catapult.
Founding Director of award winning practice, Friend and Company Architects, Friend was shortlisted for Young Architect of the Year 2008 and practice work was selected by the Architecture Foundation in 2016 for publication in New Architects 3 (2016), a showcase of Britain's best emerging practices. Latest project, New Shop for the Victoria & Albert Museum, sprung from research into the first Museum Shop that Friend found was a testbed for experimental pop-up structures. The final innovative design was Highly Commended in the 2017 Blueprint Awards deploying the first 3d printed ceramic tile, reconnecting with material taxonomies first established by the V&A in1865. A champion of design research Friend writes for the leading international design and architecture publications including Blueprint, Wallpaper* and Building Design as well as publishes and presents his research through regular exhibitions and conference proceedings.
BArch (Kingston 1st Class Hons) DipArch (UCL distinction) Post-Dip (UCL) PGCERT SEDA Research Supervisor
Phd Research Supervisor since 2014.
Friend, A. 2017, ‘Discussion - David Hamers, Adrian Friend & Ruth Mateu-Berr’ in Bueno de Mesquita & N. Hamers & D. Schoffelen & J. Vaneycken, A (eds) 2017, Trading Places: Practices of Public Participation in Art and Design Research, dpr-barcelona. (ISBN 978-84-944873-9-2)
Friend, A. 2016, ‘Friend and Company Architects’ in ‘New Architects 3, Britain’s Best Emerging Architects (Architecture Foundation)’. Merrell, London pp (ISBN 978-18-589464–5-0)
Friend, A. 2014, ‘Elements of Architecture’ [Article] Blueprint, 335 August 2014, 56-84
Friend, A. 2012, ‘Venice Vidi Vici’ [Article] Blueprint, September 2012, 42-49
External Examiner 2014-2019 University of East London, Interior Design
External Examiner 2014-2019 University of Hertfordshire, Interior Architecture and Design
Trustee of the Robert Grace Trust - Aids Charity Kenya
TRADERS (Training Art and Design Researchers for Participation in Public Space) Conference
Date: 21 and 22 November 2016
Professor Adrian Friend co-organised the closing conference of TRADERS, an EU Marie Curie ITN that Friend was lead scientist, examining different dimensions and roles of participation in public space. In this conference participants were invited to join TRADERS in exploring approaches through which artists and designers can pursue the empowerment of publics in the decision-making for, and co-creation of, public space. Will include a book as well as a daily research journal to summarise and disseminate findings to the delegates. (ISBN 978-1-910642-18-4). More details on the conference can be found at https://www.rca.ac.uk/news-and-events/news/school-architecture-hosts-public-space-conference-eu-traders-project/
RCA Live Project Research Networking Event
Date: 24th February 2016
Title: Rise of the Maker Architect from Hot-Rodding to Resilience
Professor Adrian Friend as Live Projects Senior Tutor at the Royal College of Art organised and chaired a public talk to understand why, what and how of Maker Architect culture, bringing together Anthony Engi-Meacock from 2015 Turner Prize winning collective Assemble and sculptor-architect Tom Kundig of Olson Kundig in Seattle. More details https://www.rca.ac.uk/news-and-events/events/rise-maker-architect-hot-rodding-resilience/
Date: 21st – 23rd September 2015
Title: Solving the World’s Major Challenges
Professor Adrian Friend was interviewed as part of the Network for Innovations in Culture and Creativity in Europe (N.I.C.E) Vernissage where the Helix Studio, designed by RCA students, was shortlisted for an Innovation Award and also part of the exhibition at the Forum d’Avignon Ruhr, Essen.
Professor Adrian Friend has a proven track record in high quality research outputs often in collaboration with partnering industry, professionals and HEI’s in UK and Europe. Many of my bids are supported by industry as well as government funded TSB / Innovate UK centres of manufacturing excellence such as the Manufacturing and Technology Centre in Coventry that conducts research on behalf of Airbus, BAe, and Microsoft amongst others. This is in tune with latest UK government approach to buddy up research councils such as the recent Urban Living Partnership, which I contributed to as part of the RCA, UCL, Imperial College and Kings bid, that brought together seven Research Councils with Innovate UK.
As the Lead Scientist on a 3 year Marie Curie ITN titled TRADERS Professor Adrian Friend has contributed to training five interdisciplinary researchers to engage with public spaces the research was trans European with partners from Sweden (Chalmers and University of Gothenberg) Belgium (LUCA) and Holland (Design Eindhoven)
Adrian Friend: New Redesigned V&A Shop
Awards / Prizes / Scholarships