Soane Salons return for a second season, with three new series of talks for Autumn Winter 18/19.

Launched in autumn 2017, Soane Salons offer a weekly platform to architects, designers and curators to explore and debate ideas surrounding contemporary architecture.

When Sir John Soane left his Museum to the nation in 1837, he hoped that it would continue to inspire for generations to come and stand as a true ‘academy of architecture’. Soane Salons aim to continue that spirit – and explore its meaning – in the present moment.

Browse the whole range of talks in our 2018/19 programme on our talks page, or read on to find out more.


In this series, Sir John Soane’s Museum explores changing sites of creativity in London and the increasing versatility of the contemporary workplace.

Throughout his lifetime, architect, collector and professor Sir John Soane transformed his home at Lincoln’s Inn Fields to accommodate multiple audiences and activities. Soane’s architectural cabinet of curiosities was at once a museum, an office, a home and a school, and each of these utilities can be felt within its rooms today.

With Soane’s multifaceted building at the make/shift series’ core, curators, collaborators and designers will discuss the ways in which they use/reuse locations, inhabit/occupy workspaces and manoeuvre/manipulate their own homes in London and across the globe. MAKE/SHIFT at the Soane invites the creatives who are forging a career within a fluctuating urban landscape, and changing its psychical and cultural topography as they go.

Speakers are PUP architects (3 Oct),  Practice architecture (24 Oct), Clearview (28 Nov) and Second Home (5 Dec).

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Critical Drawing

Drawing is what distinguishes architecture from simple building – situating a design within the shared culture of ideas on which architecture rests. Sitting down with pen and paper has always been central to an architect’s daily routine, at least, that is, until the advent of ubiquitous CAD and 3D-modelling.

Today, drawing is undergoing a rebirth, as a new generation architects seize the opportunities afforded by drawing’s liberation from its practical responsibilities, and transform it into a vital site of critical practice. For other architects, drawing has remained core to their practice, side-stepping the digital/analogue dichotomy.

If drawing once allowed architects to visualise possible futures, might its rebirth point a way towards recapturing architecture’s optimism and agency?

Speakers are Neil Spiller (10 Oct), Ken Shuttleworth (7 Nov), Eleanor Suess (21 Nov), and Sam Jacob (6 Feb).

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Why Collect?

From Gareth Southgate’s World Cup waistcoat, to the Donald Trump Baby Blimp, the Whitechapel ‘fatberg’ and a 3D-printed gun – no sooner does an design object achieve media attention than museums seemingly begin lining up to add it to their collections. While museums have always collected contemporary objects, the collecting of objects that have a live connection to contemporary events is a growing and increasingly contested trend in museums of architecture and design.

In this series a variety of speakers reflect on the contemporary collecting practices they are involved in, exploring the motives that drive them, the contexts in which they operate, their results and impacts (both intended and otherwise), and the broader implications they have for the present and future of museums.

Speakers are Priya Khanchandani (12 Dec) Socks-studio (30 Jan), Sharon Ament (27 Feb), and Ellie Miles (3 Apr).

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