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RIBA celebrates LGBTQ+ Pride Month 2022

We’re supporting Pride - highlighting and celebrating the work of LGBTQ+ communities and sharing allyship guidance and resources.

01 June 2022

We’re committed to platforming the work and stories of LGBTQ+ communities in architecture. On this page, we’re sharing how we’re currently doing this through projects and activities across the institute. 

Progress Pride flag

RIBA exhibitions 

Radical Rooms: Power of the plan is the RIBA's current exhibition, created through a partnership between architect Charles Holland and visual artist Di Mainstone. 

Exploring the power relations embedded within the layout of our domestic spaces, the exhibition uses stories from architectural history and highlights moments when the architectural plan has challenged or changed the conventions of domestic life.

The exhibition highlights the works of notable LGBTQ+ architects and designers such as pioneering modernist designer Eileen Gray and furniture/interiors designer Max Clendinning. It also features queer spaces such as St. Ann’s Court, designed by Raymond McGrath in 1937.  

This exhibition runs until 30 July, plan your visit now

Inside the Radical Rooms: Power of the plan exhibition, Credit: Black Edge Productions

RIBA Collections 

Throughout history, architectural spaces have formed sites where LGBTQ+ communities have explored, celebrated, or concealed sexual and gender identities. 

RIBA Collections: LGBTQ+ research guide 

This guide signposts some of the resources and materials available through the RIBA's Library and Collections. It is likely that many more stories are yet to be discovered, remaining untold because of legislation that forced LGBTQ+ individuals to conceal their identities or risk prosecution. 

Articles looking at LGBTQ+ lives from within the RIBA Collections: 

"The Partners": Seely and Paget 

The firm Seely and Paget played an important role in British architecture from the 1920s to the 1960s, from their controversial transformation of Eltham Palace for Stephen and Virginia Courtauld in 1936, to their work as successive surveyors to the fabric of St Paul’s Cathedral. 

Discretion by design: St Ann’s Court 

This is the story of how two men navigated homophobic attitudes in commissioning a modernist new home in the 1930s, illustrated by photographs and drawings from the RIBA Collections. 

Revisiting Florence's Duomo 

We explore how the dome of Florence Cathedral reveals the presence of queer stories at the symbolic heart of the Western architectural tradition. 

Revisiting the Collections: The queer aesthetics of Strawberry Hill House 

Strawberry Hill House in Twickenham, southwest London, can be read as a "queer architectural rebellion”, raising important questions about the connection between architectural innovation and queer identity. 

Strawberry Hill House, Twickenham, after it was restored for the public in 2010. Martin Charles / RIBA Collections

RIBA Books 

There are a number of books available to buy via RIBA Books that centre around LGBTQ+ themes - explore some of the titles below:

Queer X Design: 50 Years of Signs, Symbols, Banners, Logos, and Graphic Art of LGBTQ - Published in celebration of the 50th anniversary of Stonewall and the Gay Pride Parade, this is the first-ever illustrated history of the iconic art, symbols, and design that represent more than five decades of LGBTQ pride and activism. 

Queer London: A Guide to the City's LGBTQ+ Past and Present - This book delves into the cultural history of queerness in the capital, including events, organisations or venues that have sometimes been forgotten or overlooked, but which were of key importance to the community. 

Lives in Architecture: Nigel Coates - Launched by RIBA Publishing this month, this autobiography is by one of the UK’s most celebrated designers. The book charts his life from a childhood spent in rural Worcestershire to his years as a student at the Architectural Association, the founding of radical architectural group NATO, his prolific professional career, and much more.* 

Queer Spaces: An Atlas of LGBTQIA+ Places and Stories - Launched by RIBA Publishing in May 2022, this lavishly illustrated 'atlas' celebrates over 90 queer spaces from around the world.*

*Use code Pride2022 for 20% off at RIBA Books checkout. 

Queer Spaces: An Atlas of LGBTQIA+ Places and Stories book by Adam Nathaniel Furman and Joshua Mardell

Upcoming events 

Queer Spaces: An Atlas of LGBTQIA+ Places and Stories book launch – Grimshaw Architects 

23 June 2022, 6pm to 8pm BST

Grimshaw Architects London, 57 Clerkenwell Road, London 

Grimshaw invites you to join them for this book launch and panel discussion chaired by Adam Nathaniel Furman and Joshua Mardell, editors of Queer Spaces: An Atlas of LGBTQIA+ Places and Stories. 

Register free for this event at Grimshaw Architects London.

Meet-Up and march for Pride Glasgow

25 June 2022, from 10am BST

Many Studios, 3 Ross St, Glasgow

Join the Architecture LGBT+ Scotland team for a free Pride Brunch (light buffet) hosted by New Practice at Many Studios. Following the Pride Brunch, join the team who will be marching in the Glasgow Pride March. 

Register free for this event with Architecture LGBT+ Scotland.

The Power of the Dog: Film screening and Q&A 

28 June 2022, 9pm to 11.30pm BST

Bussey Building, 133 Rye Lane, London 

The RIBA has partnered with Rooftop Film Club to host a number of outdoor screenings and Q&As at the Bussey Building in Peckham throughout June to coincide with the London Festival of Architecture

Buy tickets for The Power of the Dog: Film screening and Q&A

RIBA + VitrA Talk: A Life in Architecture - Nigel Coates 

 29 June 2022, 7pm to 8.45pm BST

RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London 

Join us for a keynote lecture from Nigel Coates, to coincide with the launch of his new autobiography published by RIBA Publishing. 

Buy tickets for RIBA + VitrA Talk: A life in Architecture - Nigel Coates. 

London Pride 

2 July 2022, from 9am BST

In partnership with Architecture LGBT+, Flannery and Foster + Partners, we will be walking in the 2022 London Pride parade.

Join us at 76 Portland Place for Pride Breakfast, from 9am to 10:45am.

Register free to attend the Pride Breakfast and to learn more about the London Pride parade.

Making Radical Rooms: In conversation with Di Mainstone and Charles Holland 

5 July 2022, 7pm to 8.30pm BST

RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London 

Join visual artist Di Mainstone and architect Charles Holland, as they reveal the design process behind making the latest RIBA exhibition Radical Rooms: Power of the plan

Buy tickets for Making Radical Rooms

Curator tour of Radical Rooms: Power of the plan 

12 July 2022, 6pm to 7pm BST

RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London 

Join RIBA Curator Margaret Cubbage, for an intimate tour of our latest exhibition Radical Rooms: Power of the plan. 

Register free for this curator tour of Radical Rooms

Construction's at UK Pride, Newcastle and Pride Breakfast

23 July 2022, 10am to 3pm BST

Newcastle upon Tyne

Join Building Equality North East, Architecture LGBT+ and supporting built environment companies at the UK Pride March in Newcastle upon Tyne.

Register free for the Pride Breakfast at UK Pride, Newcastle.

UK Black Pride 

14 August 2022 

UK Black Pride – Europe’s largest pride celebration for LGBTQI+ people of African, Asian, Caribbean, Latin American and Middle Eastern-descent returns for its annual in-person protest and celebration in August at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. 

See how you can get involved with UK Black Pride

Pride events across the UK 

There are Pride events taking place across the UK this summer, from Brighton to Glasgow. Take a look at the Pride Events Calendar to find an event near you. 

Allyship  

In March, for International Transgender Day of Visibility, we filmed an interview with transgender architect Danni Kerr where she highlighted the importance of people becoming trans allies: “We need your support - if you're prepared to be visible as a trans ally, that's fantastic. You're prepared to be heard as a trans ally. And, if you're prepared to be seen in the same space as transgender people, that speaks volumes."  

So – what does being an ally to underrepresented groups mean? And how we can action change for the better, within ourselves and our wider society? Put simply – it's about acknowledging our own identities, without taking up space, listening to lived experiences and working to actively take down barriers. 

Resources to support you: 

<iframe width="700" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" allow="autoplay" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/1192003966&color=%23ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&show_teaser=true"></iframe><div style="font-size: 10px; color: #cccccc;line-break: anywhere;word-break: normal;overflow: hidden;white-space: nowrap;text-overflow: ellipsis; font-family: Interstate,Lucida Grande,Lucida Sans Unicode,Lucida Sans,Garuda,Verdana,Tahoma,sans-serif;font-weight: 100;"><a href="https://soundcloud.com/the-riba" title="The RIBA" target="_blank" style="color: #cccccc; text-decoration: none;">The RIBA</a> · <a href="https://soundcloud.com/the-riba/riba-radio-episode-14-cq" title="RIBA Radio, Episode 14: CQ Knowledge - LGBTQ+ lives" target="_blank" style="color: #cccccc; text-decoration: none;">RIBA Radio, Episode 14: CQ Knowledge - LGBTQ+ lives</a></div> 

Visit our Equity, Diversity and Inclusion page to learn more about RIBA's EDI initiatives and access additional resources. 

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