The Royal Academy of Arts prepares to celebrate its 250th anniversary, with a redevelopment designed by architect and academician Sir David Chipperfield.
Words by Emily Martin
The RA will mark its 250-year anniversary with a redevelopment as designed by internationally acclaimed architect and RA academician Sir David Chipperfield. Scheduled to complete this year, the additional new building will link Burlington house and Burlington Gardens, uniting and revitalising the two-acre site.
The redevelopment will provide public viewing to the institution’s historic treasures, the work of its academicians and the RA schools, alongside its world-class exhibitions programme. Among the new public areas will be spaces for exhibitions and displays across the site, allowing many works to be brought out of storage.
The link bridge, connecting Burlington house and Burlington Gardens, will create a central route from Piccadilly to Mayfair. The redevelopment will provide significant improvements to visitors’ facilities across the site and will conserve the facade of Burlington Gardens, one of the grandest unrestored buildings in central London.
Christopher le Brun, president of the royal academy of arts, commented: ‘royal academicians are at the heart of everything we do – they govern the academy and are responsible for its direction. British visual art has achieved outstanding international success in recent decades and the proof of the academy’s resurgence in the 21st century is that among our academician painters, sculptors and printmakers we have such world-class architects as sir David Chipperfield RA.’