With over 50 built projects across the world, David Adjaye is rapidly emerging as a major international figure in architecture and design. Rather than advancing a signature architectural style, Adjaye’s structures address local concerns and conditions through both a historical understanding of context and a global understanding of modernism. This mid-career survey—the first devoted to Adjaye—offers an in-depth overview of the architect’s distinct approach and visual language with a dynamic installation design conceived by Adjaye Associates.
While Adjaye has never adhered to a discrete style, his projects coalesce around certain ideas. Often set in cities struggling with diversity and difference, his public buildings provide spaces that foster links among people and explore how neighborhoods evolve, how new communities are created, and how unexpected junctures weave diverse urban identities and experiences into the tapestry of multiculturalism. Rethinking conventions, his designs speak to the specific time and place in which they were made. These ideas are expressed in important recent projects, such as the National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) on the mall in Washington, D.C., a building that faces history head on, bringing together references from across Africa and America in a visually and physically evocative design.