The work of international Italian-born architect Richard Rogers is examined in a new exhibition which has opened at Britain's Royal Academy (RA).
The exhibition, 'Richard Rogers Inside Out', runs at the Royal Academy in central London until October 18.
Rogers was born in Italy in 1933 to French parents, and studied architecture in London and the United States before setting up his practice in Britain in 1962.
Rogers has had a successful and controversial career since then, designing unusual buildings in high-tech materials.
His approach to designing buildings has left its mark on cities and other architects around the globe.
The RA exhibition aims to examine Rogers's buildings and his creative process through identifying themes in his work, said exhibition curator Jeremy Melvin.
Melvin told Xinhua, "Rogers is an architect of great international standing, winner of the Pritzker Prize (like a Nobel Prize for architecture). He holds a high status among the architectural community."
Melvin added, "He has always been seen as an architect with an international flavor. He has always had an Italian flavor; his enjoyment of street life, of urban life, is greatly informed by his Italian background and he still maintains contacts with Italy."
Melvin said, "We have tried to show the range of Rogers's work -- from airports to art centers, to mass-produced housing and offices -- but also the range of his ideas and influences."
He added,"We want to show that Rogers does not think in isolation. What he does is to pick up ideas, maybe from other art forms or a political text, or from music or the way he engages with politics -- and he somehow puts them into some sort of relationship with each other."
Melvin went on, "So his range of buildings is paralleled by his range of cultural, creative influences and what holds them all together is the process of collaboration -- with co-directors, clients, consultants, construction industry and through engagement with society."
There are two seminal projects without which it would be impossible to think of Rogers as an architect; the first is the Pompidou Center in Paris designed with Renzo Piano completed in 1977, and the second is the Lloyd's building in London completed in 1986.
Both are examined in detail in the exhibition.
The Pompidou Center gained an instant reputation among the public for its radical rethinking of what an arts center building should do, most vividly expressed in the architecture itself.
Rogers deliberately exposed the services of the building -- like water pipes and air conditioning ducts -- and stuck them on the outside of the building, creating versatile and large public spaces inside. For good measure, Rogers also had the services painted in garish colors; they were definitely not to be ignored.
Another Rogers theme exposed in the Pompidou Center was his habit of collaborating closely with colleagues. At the Pompidou Center Rogers's collaborator was Italian architect Renzo Piano.
Melvin said, "The Pompidou Center radically transformed what people thought about art centers, not just the public but also the curators and directors of such institutions."
The Lloyd's building had a similar electric effect among the public, and saw Rogers once more deploy his style of putting services on the outside of the building. Notable at Lloyd's are the lifts and towers to carry service access, which are all on the frame of the building.
Melvin said, "The Lloyd's building a very, very rare example of a commercial office building which transformed what commercial office buildings could be about."
Both these buildings are from the middle and early period of Rogers career, but the exhibition looks at some of his later work too, such as Madrid Barajas airport from about 10 years ago, and Bordeaux Law Courts completed in the late 1990s.
The exhibition also looks at Rogers's designs for the Senedd, the national Assembly of Wales building.
Melvin said, "It is a new parliament building for an institution that did not exist in the late 1990s; so there are all sorts of ideas about how you invent a building for a democratic institution for the 21st century."