The Art of Architecture

The Art of Architecture

Series 1 - Episode 5



Throughout this series, we’ve seen sophisticated computer renderings of new buildings from all angles before they’re actually constructed. Architect Ptolemy Dean takes a very different approach – his work begins with sketches and watercolours. “The drawing is the key thing,” he says, “the process of looking.” It’s a method that found favour with the dean of Westminster Abbey, who commissioned Dean to build a staircase of wood and glass to give the public access to a new exhibition space in a gallery some 50ft above the floor of the abbey.

The finished tower is a thing of elegant, streamlined beauty, which pays total respect to its surroundings while looking, as The Guardian put it, like “a gothic space rocket”.


A look at Ptolemy Dean's Weston Tower, which lies within Westminster Abbey, examining what went into designing the most significant addition to this historic site in 240 years.