The Library

A short film exploring the design and fabrication of the library's laminated wooden frame produced by Will Gowland.


An ambitious multi-phase build project whose core research is an immense laminated wood frame that was given shape by a robot mounted bandsaw.

The library and its laminated frame are part of Wakeford Hall, an ambitious academic building being developed at the centre of the AA’s Hooke Park campus. With multiple student cohorts contributing, as the primary studio tutor for the program I was intimately involved in the project’s development – from early design, through prototyping to eventual erection on site.

The project’s development reflects a continuous back and forth between the studio and workshop. The library’s skeletal structure was developed through iterations of drawing, physical model making and prototyping. Each of its 14 laminated wood panels was shaped using a robot mounted bandsaw, and marks of the processes and tools that produced them remain present in the finished object – from tree growth to digital fabrication.

A second group of students re-invented the existing proposal for the library’s envelope. A thorough 3D laser scan of the assembled structure I completed allowed us to ensure their new design decisions were based on assembled reality rather than intent.

Aitor Almarez
Florencia Rodriguez
Francisco Adriasola
Kevin Kim
Mariela Reyes
Pedro Bran
Unha Park
Veda Barath
Xin Tu

Charlie Corrywright
Christopher Sadd (Forester)
Edward Coe (Technical Coordinator)
Jack Draper (Project Manager)
Martin Self (Program Director)
Emmanuel Vercruysse
Michael Arnett (Robotics Developer)
SummerBuild participants
William Moorwood
Will Gowland