Heart of London partners with London Festival of Architecture for month-long Festival in June

Monday 20 May: Heart of London has partnered with London Festival of Architecture (LFA) to deliver a programme of events celebrating architecture and city-making in the West End throughout June, when LFA celebrates its 20th anniversary.

The programme of events will be delivered in collaboration with Art of London – our award winning consumer arts initiative, which champions the cultural sector and celebrates art in every form. Events will embrace this year’s festival theme of ‘reimagine’ and will showcase the West End as a world-class hub of cultural expression for visitors to experience.

Highlights of events taking place in the West End as part of the London Festival of Architecture include:

  • National Portrait Gallery Architecture Tours: Guided tours of the transformed National Portrait Gallery following the Inspiring People project.
  • Visit Notre Dame de France: The church, built on a former panorama and destroyed during the Blitz, has been reimagined several times.
  • How Do You Modernise History? How Cameron Mackintosh Reimagined Eight of London’s Leading West End Theatres: A discussion and Q&A with the experts at Delfont Mackintosh Theatres, dissecting the architecture of London’s theatreland.
  • RA 2024 Summer Exhibition Architecture Afternoon: hear from architects, both established and emerging, as they discuss making spaces and the importance of these studios in the design and production processes.
  • Lucent Twilight Tours: As London’s West End lights start to sparkle, join us for a twilight tour of Lucent — a remarkable mixed-use development that has reimagined the spaces behind London’s iconic Piccadilly Lights.
  • Look Up: West End: Esteemed London tour Guide and Founder of Look Up London, Katie Wignall, has created a special tour of West End destinations so members of the public can discover the architectural excellence in the city.

Two ‘public art’ installations will also be in place during the Festival, engaging communities, families and the general public with interactive activities.

Play Place is an installation for families and children that inspires collaborative, creative play with inclusive urban design created by Delve Architects and Plaey Workshop, in partnership with HOLBA and Westminster City Council, sponsored by Dragon Smoke Construction. This supersized, colourful shape-sorting puzzle provides a unique play area for little ones to discover in Leicester Square Gardens which, through the LFA theme of ‘Reimagine’, will ask how can we reintegrate play into our cities?

Pi Park will be in place in St James’s Market between 6th to 28th June and takes visitors on an inspirational journey through biomimetic architecture and micro-scale precision engineering, brought to life through the latest developments in additive manufacturing and creative technologies. Created in partnership with The Crown Estate, HOLBA, Westminster City Council and LFA, Pi Park will host a series of creative-making workshops on the theme of Pi, so everyone can try their hand at making something for themselves, reimagining the famous mathematical construct in creative ways as ceramic Pi(e) Pots, kinetic Pi Bots, or digital Pi Bits.

Mark Williams, Deputy Chief Executive, Director of Art of London said:

“The Heart of London Business Alliance is thrilled to partner with LFA in 2024 and celebrate the West End’s incredible architecture, where historic landmarks seamlessly coexist with contemporary institutions. A catalyst for positive change in the West End, we are focused on securing the long-term commercial and cultural wellbeing of the area. With our consumer arts initiative, Art of London, the Festival enables us to champion the West End whilst inspiring visitors to explore architectural excellence and ignite conversations surrounding the importance of children having a place to play in urban spaces via interactive activations such as Play Place and Pi Park.”

The full West End programme is available at lfa.london/westend, where individuals can plan their festival itineraries and book onto events. Visit ArtofLondon.co.uk to be inspired by itineraries and eateries to visit throughout London’s West End for the duration of LFA.