An important set of drawings have just been donated to the AA Archives by the artist, designer and academic Andrew Holmes. The gift consists of drawing for his 1967/8 ‘Flexikit’ student project, a steel pre-fabricated housing system which was designed to be bolted to a precast concrete foundation. A horizontal central steel gantry separates neighbours and provides housing for drainage, gas, electricity and water pipes, whilst forming the basis from which the roof is suspended via steel cables.
Presented to the AA jury in the form of a literal ‘kit’, housed within a clear polythene bag, Holmes’ project was one of the legendary AA student works of the late 1960s.
Following graduation, Andrew worked with Richard Rogers and the influence of his ‘Flexikit’ scheme is clearly visible in the High Tech designs for both the Inmos Microprocessor Factory, Newport, Wales (1982-87) and the PA Technology Center, Princeton (1982-5)…