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The AR’s new editorial agenda will be launched in the next issue

The AR announces a relaunch that promises more substance for our valued global readership

Since The Architectural Review was founded in 1896, it has striven to place itself at the vanguard of architectural culture and production, not as a passive observer, but as a vocal participant and speculative activist within the profession.

Yet even through the long perspective of our own history, it is clear we have reached a critical moment for architecture. There are huge issues facing the world, and these need a considered response from the global architectural community. For next month’s October edition, we will relaunch the magazine with the primary aim of tackling these issues more rigorously.

The AR has always sought to bring our readers the most important completed buildings from around the world. This remains so. But we also now embrace the larger project of developing the urgent thinking required by challenges such as the marginalisation of the profession, diminishing natural resources, increasing financial insecurity and the dis

And while this is a critical moment for architecture, it is one for architectural publishing, too. The internet’s instant artillery has attacked traditional models of communication, but we believe that a monthly international magazine is a discursive platform that can - and must - play an incredibly important part in this transitional landscape.

Last summer, the AR introduced an upgraded website, which has completely changed how we provide content. But as we seize these digital opportunities, we have strengthened our belief in the need for a high-quality print product that delivers the information and stimulation that our readers want.

All this inevitably implies a different graphic design approach. Like you, we want the AR to have more in-depth and diverting features; and we also want the look and feel of the pages to resonate more strongly with the seriousness of the editorial intent, to communicate our content more clearly and elegantly.

For the redesign, we have commissioned the experienced hand of Simon Esterson, who started his design career on our sister title The Architects’ Journal. Now the Art Director of graphic design magazine Eye, Simon is collaborating with the AR’s new Art Editor, Jon Morgan, who joins us from the London culture magazine Dazed & Confused.

To deliver our architectural agenda, we want our print and web offerings to complement each other and to play to their respective strengths. The magazine’s role will be reoriented toward areas where print can excel - such as longer pieces and high-quality images - with more supplementary content migrating online.

We have chosen to enhance some of the magazine’s existing features and to introduce completely new ones where we need to. This interrogative approach has guided the section-by-section composition of the AR, and below we highlight the major changes:

Broader View
Broader View, the invigorating salvo of our View section, will be a short essay by a high-profile contributor from another discipline who will share their thinking with the architectural community.

We will introduce a range of columnists from practice and academia. For October, we are delighted to welcome to the roster the award-winning architect Farshid Moussavi.

The selected buildings will be featured in greater depth, with longer pieces of criticism, more incisive reportage and a greater emphasis on drawings.

Revisit will re-evaluate a ground-breaking project from a previous era. The pieces will measure whether the project succeeded and what lessons can be drawn from it for today.

A quarterly extended feature, Typology will examine a different building type in order to assess how wider changes (from society to technology) are affecting architectural production in a specific sector.

Architectural theory has become ever-more disconnected from practice and our Theory section aims to close this gap with provocative and relevant architectural discourse.

Landscape and Urbanism
Taking a position against the isolated ‘icon’ building of recent years, our renewed interest in the connective tissue that binds architectural projects together will be explored in Landscape and Urbanism features.

Skill will become more useful by studying the techniques from several projects to frame a discussion around a particular architectural/technical enquiry.

This new feature will focus on a specific tutor or institution to explore the most effective ways to teach architecture as both a cultural endeavour and practical discipline. Additional student portfolios will be
hosted online.

Reputations will assess the perceived legacy and critical influence of a major figure’s contribution to architecture, providing a thought-provoking coda to each issue.

We thank our loyal readers for their continued support over the years, and hope that you will enjoy this evolution of the AR.

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