Having watched Renzo Piano’s Shard slowly cut ever further into the London skyline over the past couple of years, we’ve been eagerly anticipating a timelapse video recording its rise. Today, we found one which comes courtesy of Renzo Piano Building Workshop and was made by architectural photographer Paul Raftery and director Dan Lowe. The video documents the final stages of cladding the shard with its glass outer shell and building the large ‘shards’ that jut up into the sky.
While the 1,000 ft mega-structure may have divided opinion, jutting up from the skyline and overshadowing surrounding buildings, the 74-year-old Italian architect hopes it will become viewed as a classic piece of architecture in years to come. “When St Paul's was built, it was modern, just like the Shard is modern now," he recently said. "It wasn't a classic at the time. It became a classic."
The shard has enabled Piano to fulfil a long-time ambition, albeit in an unexpected way. He says that he’s always dreamed of “making a building like a little town”. Wiith its projected 8,000 inhabitants, the Shard is actually more ecological than a small town of the same number, which would use five times more energy than the tower will.
To find out more about Renzo Piano's work, Phaidon's Works series is a detailed exploration of the complete works of the acclaimed architect.