University of Sussex Media Release.
. The swinging Sixties revisited

(Or: What you didn't know about the architecture of the University of Sussex)

6 June 2000
For immediate release

Remember the Sixties? Of course you don't. For, as they say, if you remember the Sixties, you weren't really there. But there are plenty of clues still left around to suggest what the decade was all about, including the remarkable, modernist architecture of the University of Sussex.

To mark Architecture Week 2000, the Gardner Arts Centre at the University of Sussex is holding an open day on Sunday, June 11 for people to learn more about some of the Grade I and Grade II* listed buildings at the Falmer campus.

Dr Maurice Howard, reader in History of Art at the University, will give an illustrated talk about architect Sir Basil Spence, whose earliest buildings at Falmer are now considered to be of national significance.

Together with other members of the University of Sussex History of Art department, he will also lead tours of some of the listed buildings. These include the Gardner Arts Centre, with its flowing curves; Falmer House, with its surprising irregularities; and the Meeting House, which has a roof like a Sussex hop kiln. Staff at the Gardner Arts Centre will also be offering a backstage tour.

"When these places were built, it was an exciting time," says Dr Howard. "Sir Basil Spence had designed Coventry Cathedral, which was one of the most talked-about buildings in the country, and had been involved with the Festival of Britain."

"The buildings at the University of Sussex were designed to fit in with the Downs and the wonderful landscape. But they also reflected the modern views of what universities were all about. Now their uses are changing and we need to think about their future and why it's important to preserve them."

The Open Day will be from 12 noon until 4pm on June 11. All the events are free. To book seats for the talk, which starts at 1pm, or places for the architecture tours (scheduled for 2pm, 2.30pm and 3pm) and the backstage tours (2.30pm, 3pm and 3.30pm), contact the Gardner Arts Centre box office on 01273 685861.

Notes for editors

For further information, please contact Jacqui Bealing, Alison Field or Harriet Sexton in the Press and Communications Office, University of Sussex. Tel. 01273 678888, fax 01273 877456.

To receive University of Sussex releases by email, please email information@sussex.ac.uk. Include the name of your media outlet, your title, postal address, phone and fax numbers, and the headline of this news release.

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