Photo: Jan Siefke
Robin Lee trained in architecture and sculpture and founded his architecture practice in 2002. His practice has been awarded Young Architect of the Year by Building Design (UK) in 2006, Architecture Practice of the Year by Commercial Media Group (Ireland) in 2011 and Design Vanguard by Architectural Record (US) in 2012. Robin Lee Architecture is a London-based architecture practice.
The Robin Lee Architecture window design for Agnes B playfully links past and present materials with place by using traditional bricks to make a modern cityscape. Clay, extracted from the earth, has been linked to Chinese culture for centuries - utilised to make refined porcelain and pottery, terracotta figures and sculptural artefacts. Some of the oldest examples of terracotta as a building material can be traced back to China. The Xintiandi district of Shanghai is characterised by traditional 'shikumen' houses made entirely from handmade terracotta bricks.
Agnes B opened her first international boutique in 1983 in Prince Street, New York. The Downtown area of New York was populated in the 1960s through to the 1980s by minimalist artists, whose work was influenced by industrialised processes and who made work that utilised utilitarian materials and pre-existing objects. In 1986 Carl Andre made the sculpture Manifest Destiny for artist Donald Judd's gallery on Spring Street, one block from Agnes B's store on Prince Street. The sculpture was composed solely of eight Empire bricks stacked vertically on their sides.