Perspectives on Architecture: The Four Elements of Ornament, Meaning and Eloquence in Architecture


May 21 2013 • 6.00pm
to 7.00pm
For details of opening times please visit

Ornament had always been an integral and constituent part of architecture until its Modernist demise during the last century. As a result, architecture lost an entire language that was uniquely able to convey intrinsic and extrinsic meaning beyond the categories of proportion, material and space.

In this talk, Oliver Domeisen will trace the re-emergence of decoration, pattern and architectural ornament in contemporary practice. It also proposes a theoretical framework that defines the core elements of ornament based on historical precedent in an attempt to provide a shared platform upon which this renewed design discipline may thrive.

There will be an opportunity to view two specially selected books on ornament from the British Architectural Library after the talk.

Oliver Domeisen is the Curator of Contemporary Architecture and Urbanism at the V&A. He is also a thesis advisor and history and theory course lecturer for the MArch and BScprogrammes at the Bartlett, UCL. He is the founder of dlm architectural designers Ltd and previously worked as a Unit Master at the AA and as a project architect for Zaha Hadid Architects. He has lectured and published on the topic of architectural ornament in the UK and abroad.


Free event.
Advance booking is essential.



Hayley Russell
020 7307 3678
Perspectives on Architecture Series 




Herzog and de Meuron

Herzog & de Meuron. 40 Bond Street Apartment Building; Detail. New York2004-07.

Photograph by Oliver Domeisen