POPULOUS SPONSORS LEADING STADIA EXHIBITION AT THE SOANE MUSEUM TO COINCIDE WITH 2012 OLYMPICS
LONDON – 26 JULY 2010
With the London Olympic Games only 2 years away tomorrow, the global architectural practice, Populous, is pleased to announce the sponsorship of an exciting and topical exhibition. Populous is the official sponsor for the exhibition titled; Stadia: Sport and Vision in Architecture to be held at the Sir John Soane’s Museum in London. The exhibition will open in the summer of 2012 to coincide with the Olympic Games in London.
Stadia: Sport and Vision in Architecture will be the first ever exhibition devoted to this subject, tracing a path from the classical origins of the Western tradition of sports architecture in Ancient Greece, through to an overview of modern stadia design from the 19th century to the present day. The exhibition will be the first to be held in a new Gallery at the Soane marking the Museum’s completion of a significant three-year programme of restoration and refurbishment improvements. The new, larger Gallery will allow, for the very first time, the development of a programme of educational activities that focus on exhibitions - from fun activities for young visitors and talks within the Gallery, to art workshops for adults and projects for students.
Drawing upon some of the 30,000 drawings and hundreds of volumes in the Museum’s collection, the exhibition will include one of the great treasures of Sir John Soane’s Museum, the Codex Coner. Once consulted by Michelangelo, this is the earliest archeologically correct record of the Colosseum in Rome. The centre piece of the 2012 exhibition will be a highly detailed model of the London 2012 Olympic Stadium, which was designed by Populous.
The word ‘stadium’ itself is derived from a key athletic event of the ancient Olympic Games – the stadion race held over a distance of 190 metres (supposedly measured by the feet of Hercules.) The Stadion, the building where the race took place, was large enough for 20 competitors who started at the blast of a trumpet. Greek stadia and Roman arenas can be seen to have influenced the form of sports architecture throughout the ages.
Commenting on today’s announcement, Rod Sheard, Senior Principal of Populous said:
“We are thrilled to be supporting such an exciting exhibition which will capture the historic, as well as the inspirational design, of iconic stadia throughout the centuries. We hope this will appeal to stadia fans and architects, as well as provide our London Olympic visitors with some fascinating insights into the design of sporting venues that have helped keep spectators across the ages enthralled with chariot racing to football.”