The Cass, Whitechapel, London

The Cass: A sense of city and exteriority

The extensive floor plate (approx. 1400m2) has been liberated by moving the existing service core that was located directly in front of the main lift and staircase lobby, to a position along the north wall of the building. This has given the possibility of making an urban space with a sense of city and exteriority within the building. When entering the new floor from the main staircase, one arrives in "the boulevard", a large shared space that connects a tapestry of studio spaces on the floor. This tapestry is structured in a similar way to Paul Klee’s painting In der Sromung sechs Schwellen, (Six wiers in the current) 1929, with its parallel bands of varying sizes of fields – a series of comb-like structures arranged next to each other.

Three geographies are arranged next to each other running in a north-south direction parallel to the Boulevard space. On the east side of the Boulevard is the geography of Room Studios. This is a series of rooms each with a large door and window facing the Boulevard, like a row of small houses on a street. Each room has a view to the city over east London. The geography facing the Boulevard on the west side are three meeting rooms and an existing light well in the centre of the floor plate. Between the Meeting Rooms there are passages that connect the Boulevard to the 3rd geography, the Open Studios on the west side of the building. The Open Studios are divided with large plywood screens to allow use by different studio groups. The intention is that this large studio hall that extends the entire length of the building is a more flexible and multi-use space that can be easily cleared for an end-of-year exhibition or rearranged for varying sizes of student groups. The windows along the western façade have a continuous floor-to-ceiling curtain to diffuse the afternoon sunlight.

As the entire building is intended to be the home of the new joint School of Art, Architecture and Design, two new open staircases have been introduced in Phase 01 to connect the fourth floor architecture studios directly to the third and fifth floor studios, like internal staircases in a house. The idea is to promote informal contacts and dialogue between students and staff of various courses, by giving the possibility of easy vertical connection from floor to floor without the necessity of using the main staircase and lifts. The Domestic Stair in the Boulevard connects the Boulevards on the fourth and third floors, and a more tower-like Domestic Stair in the Open Studio connects the fourth and fifth floor studios. It is intended that these stairs will ultimately connect the first floor to the fifth floor in a continuous promenade through the studio spaces of the entire building.


Passages between meeting rooms

Multi-use space

Building plan

The Cass, Whitechapel

The Domestic Stair

Connects the Boulevards on the 4th & 3rd floors

Three geographies

Running in a north-south direction

Recent news from The Cass

Clerkenwell Design Week

Cass furniture students exhibiting their work at two events during celebrated annual design festival.

Cass Foundation course shows to open on 22 May

Senior lecturer Chi Roberts shares some exciting news about this year's Cass Foundation course shows.

London Nights

18 May-9 November 2018

Work by Cass Photography alumni features in major exhibition at Museum of London Metropolitan University.

Cass Fashion Show 2018

Thursday 7 June 2018, 2pm and 6pm

The Cass Salon 2018 promises a “beautifully wrong, sublimely scandalous" live interactive installation of new fashion talent.

Cass Summer Shows 2018 – dates announced

Students from London Met’s Sir John Cass School of Art, Architecture and Design showcase their talent with a season of summer events.

London Met graduate designs artwork for Big Issue Royal Wedding edition

Cass graduate David Tovey discusses his remarkable life and his latest projects in the week his artwork is featured on the royal wedding edition of The Big Issue magazine.

Project Red catwalk show at The Cass

Fashion designers of the future showcase their designs in third annual fashion show.

Cass students selected as Venice 2018 Fellows

Two students have been awarded fellowships and will be spending a month in Venice conducting research.

London Met lecturer chosen for prestigious director’s residency

Lecturer Rishi Trikha is currently taking part in the Circus 50:50 programme and is undertaking a director’s residency at the Roundhouse and at the New Vic Theatre.

Irish Writers in London Summer School

7 June - 13 July 2018

Dates announced for 23rd annual summer programme where students work with leading authors.

The Brady Clubs: An East End Community

2-18 May 2018

New exhibition explores pioneering East End youth clubs through photography and memorabilia.

Young entrepreneurs celebrated at Big Idea Challenge awards

Budding entrepreneurs from across London have been taking part in the annual Big Idea Challenge, one of London’s biggest entrepreneurial competitions for young people.

Ikebana, performance and art

Special Guest Lecturer Takaya Fujii gives students insight into contemporary work inspired by ancient Japanese tradition.

Cass tutor awarded Winston Churchill Travelling Fellowship

Rosie Hervey, architecture alumna and tutor is awarded prestigious fellowship for project to investigate different models of ‘living together’.

First Year Interiors students visit the Old Oak Collective

First year Interiors students are investigating new typologies within architecture and were afforded the opportunity to visit the Old Oak Collective, a large co-living space.