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Hopkins house
Hampstead, London NW3
Hopkins house
associated engineer
Anthony Hunt Associates
Anthony Hunt
date  1975 - 1976
era  Modern  |  category  Building  |  reference  TQ269858
photo  courtesy Anthony Hunt
Built out of steel and glass, and engineered by Tony Hunt to the very limits of these materials, the structure of the Hopkins house appears slender and unobtrusive.
It is the home and studio of architects Michael and Patty Hopkins (now Sir Michael and Lady Hopkins). It has become a symbol of the design philosophy of the generation of architects and engineers that emerged in London in the 1960s. The music, art and fashion of the time produced an optimistic, technological and spontaneous style. Architecture was a part of this.
The building's two storey framework is a simple 2m x 4m grid of square hollow section columns and lattice beams. These are made of hot rolled angles and concertina rods welded together. The side walls are braced by double-skinned profiled-steel cladding panels. The front and back walls feature full-height sliding windows glazed with toughened glass.
A pedestrian bridge leads from street level to the upper storey, which is the studio part of the house. The living areas are accommodated in the lower, garden level.
The lightness of the design prompted the famous American architect/engineer Richard Buckminster Fuller, when he visited the Hopkins house, to ask his much-practised trademark question, "How much does this building weigh?"
Architect: Michael Hopkins & Partners
Supervising engineer: Anthony Hunt
Research: ND
"Michael Hopkins" by Cristina Donati, Skira Editore SpA , Milan, 2006
Architectural Review, vol. CL XII, no. 970, December 1977 (John Winter)

Hopkins house