dublin-based architectural photographer ste murray pays a tribute to british architect richard seifert and his significant ‘space house’ on occasion of its 50th anniversary. the photo-essay depicts the building from various angles and in different situations in london’s daylight and dusk. designboom features the photographer’s story sharing his impression of the building.

all images © ste murrey



‘the headlines on the daily morning newspapers told me that it would be the highest ever recorded temperature for that day in history. there was indeed a whiff of sunscreen on the tube as I made my way to the center to celebrate another milestone; the space house turns 50 this year. designed by george marsh and richard seifert, construction started on the cylindrical volume in 1964, and finished four years later,’ says murray.



’15 stories of precast cruciform blocks sit upon Y-shaped supports at ground level. I was interested in how this building, practically symmetrical in its uniform circular shape, reacted to its context and vice-versa. there is an inherent stubbornness with bold modernist buildings such as this; confident in their own agenda, they can sometimes turn their back on an area.’



‘the space house feels quietly self-assured in its own self-esteem, allowing the various other buildings in the area to work alongside it. the structure was bathed in sunlight, so I decided to underexpose a few of the photos to bring this contrast out. I wanted to let those highlights shine, alongside the darker parts of the image, where people took shade from the sun.’



‘as a visitor to london, I’m drawn to the constant paths and trails left by airplanes overhead. this seemed appropriate to include them in some of the images, given the building’s purpose as an office for the civil aviation authority.’



‘indeed, it is rumoured that the space house was originally meant to be twice as tall and used as a luxury hotel. one wonders when the lease is up at the end of 2019, if it could be made more accessible for public; helping it relate and connect even more with its surroundings, and cement itself as a favourite among sweaty londoners and visitors alike.’







designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: maria erman | designboom

    have something to add? share your thoughts in our comments section below.

    comments policy
    LOG IN
    designboom's comment policy guidelines
    generally speaking, if we publish something, it's because we're genuinely interested in the subject. we hope you'll share this interest and if you know even more about it, please share! our goal in the discussion threads is to have good conversation and we prefer constructive opinions. we and our readers have fun with entertaining ones. designboom welcomes alerts about typos, incorrect names, and the like.
    the correction is at the discretion of the post editor and may not happen immediately.

    what if you disagree with what we or another commenter has to say?
    let's hear it! but please understand that offensive, inappropriate, or just plain annoying comments may be deleted or shortened.

    - please do not make racist, sexist, anti-semitic, homophobic or otherwise offensive comments.
    - please don't personally insult the writers or your fellow commenters.
    - please avoid using offensive words, replacing a few letters with asterisks is not a valid workaround.
    - please don't include your website or e-mail address in your comments for the purpose of self-promotion.
    - please respect jury verdicts and do not discuss offensively on the competition results
    (there is only one fist prize, and designboom usually asks renown professionals to help us to promote talent.
    in addition to the awarded designs, we do feel that almost all deserve our attention, that is why we publish
    the best 100-200 entries too.)

    a link is allowed in comments as long as they add value in the form of information, images, humor, etc. (links to the front page of your personal blog or website are not okay). unwelcome links (to commercial products or services of others, offensive material etc. ) will be redacted. and, ... yes, spam gets banned. no, we do not post fake comments.


    a diverse digital database that acts as a valuable guide in gaining insight and information about a product directly from the manufacturer, and serves as a rich reference point in developing a project or scheme.

    latest news