Alexandr Valakh takes First Prize at the Tata/BCSA Competition

Familiar face in the workshop Alexandr Valakh has won the Tata/BCSA First prize for his Stacked City Prototype project, with particular praise for his submission blending the use of models and renders to convey the different aspects of his design. MSA wrote a short article on their news feed here.

Alex final Project (1)

This Model along with some of alex’s earlier work will be on display as part of the upcoming exhibition, B.15:45.

We wish Alex all the best for his future projects.

SEED PSS Conference Workshop

On Wednesday we held a short hand-on workshop for the Professional Support Staff at the School of Environment, Education and Development (SEED), the School in which our workshop is tied in UoM.

We gave an overview of the role we play in students work and how our equipment is suited to this followed by a short assembly session of some laser cut components.

PSS Workshop Day (2) PSS Workshop Day (7) PSS Workshop Day (12)

PSS Workshop Day (16) PSS Workshop Day (15) PSS Workshop Day (18)Feedback on the session was very positive and we hope to take part in similar collaboration workshops with staff in the future.

Jim and Scott


B.15:45 Exhibition Updates

Hi everyone!

Apologies for that lack of recent updates. We have been very busy researching, designing and building the upcoming B.15:45 Modelmaking Exhibition for September.

We can now be almost 100% sure that the exhibition will be opening on the evening of Friday 12th September 2014 – This will be confirmed very soon and we will be sure to post full details on here.


We have been able to gather a fantastic array of projects from the schools most recent exhibition as well as other more historic examples presenting a great range. If you haven’t already we encourage you to share this link to help us get even more responses for our survey and record a more complete history of the workshop through peoples accounts.

Every view is valuable to us so don’t hesitate to add your own!


Today we conducted the first of an upcoming series of video interviews on the role of Architectural Modelmaking and the history of our workshop. We spoke to MSA Lecturer Eamonn Canniffe who first began working at the school in 1986. He gave his perspective on how the use of models has influenced architectural design for students up to it’s current role as well as informing us of the role his study models of classic 20th Century Architecture with students played.

This interview along with several others will be edited to help us tell the story of modelmaking in our exhibition. Complete individual interviews will also be posted over a period of time to hear more accounts of modelmaking and workshop life at the school over the past 45 years – B.15:TV is born!

More updates soon!


Visiting London Architecture School Shows

There have been a great range of Architecture school shows this past month some of which we have been able to visit to see what the rest of the world is offering in architectural education. This has proved very interesting and in some ways reassuring in our approach to making at MSA.


The graduate show at Westminster gave a really good balance of processes and materials in their model work.

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Over at the Architectural Association the projects were heavily focussed on exploring CAD driven potential in their designs. There were a great selection of structural studies and organic forms. It was good to see such a wide variety of processes being used to develop the projects here with things often being made out of everyday and seemingly unorthodox materials such as scouring pads and liquorice!

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At The Bartlett show each graduate display was vast. The mix of graphic and making media on show here was immense. Despite the scale of it all I felt that there was a lot of money misused here with huge sets of models produced entirely using 3D printing on an industrial scale.

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The show was stunning but overall I felt it was much more a case of money over well considered decisions in terms of making and being waste conscious. That said I’d recommend anyone go to visit these shows in future to see the range of things produced and consider your own approach to getting the results you want. The quality of a display can look crisp, enticing and impressive but the real value of it for you as a student should be in the quality of your design and your ability to effectively convey it.

You don’t need an excess of money to do this. It takes planning and careful consideration of your aims.