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Given Richard Stayte’s departure from architect Alsop, where he headed the in-house graphics team, how can design and architecture work better together? Should they collaborate rather than co-habit?

‘Collaboration between disciplines is a foundation stone of Pentagram and the reason I’m here. It gives a wider creative perspective to the projects we undertake and happens instinctively: either formally or by a kind of collective osmosis. It’s a holistic approach that blurs the increasingly outdated boundaries between two- and three-dimensional design.’

Lorenzo Apicella, Partner, Pentagram

‘I don’t think there is a single recipe for conceiving and developing good work. Different people work in different ways at different times. An in-house graphic department could be marvellous for some time; the in-house team moving on to another place could be equally marvellous. “Co-habitat” can inspire for a while, only later leading to “bad habit” and complacency.’

Ron Arad, Architect/designer, Ron Arad Associates

‘Design and architecture are one of the same thing, born out of the desire to solve problems – they’re inseparable. Collaboration and mutual respect for individual skills and experience is vital, a given for any truly creative studio. Co-habitation or living in sin? That’s a hard one to call.’

Paul Williams, Architect, Stanton Williams

‘Design communicates someone’s vision in a highly complex, but inclusive process of materialising it. The success of this and, ultimately, the built project, is still largely dependable on the creative and laterally thinking personalities and their [motives to] work with/in teams, though not all under same roof. So, yes, collaborate rather than co-habit; delightful rather than average.’

Sniez Torbarina, Associate, Jestico & Whiles Architects

‘The idea of cross-discipline design consultancy (even if only in the mind) is fast gaining credence outside the design and architecture fields. From structures and words, to film and sound, the stimulating medley of intelligent ideas is finally breaching the barriers of protectionist reserve. What is critical is to ensure a true understanding of the differences between the various disciplines. Many designers have a hard enough time getting their heads around the cultural landscape as it is, so proposing another schism will serve no-one.’

David Chaloner, Interior and retail design director, Conran & Partners

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