Buildings as theatre

‘Buildings as Theatre’ is the brand-new curtain walling CPD from aluminium systems house AluK, available to book now via the company’s dedicated learning portal at:

Exploring how innovation in framing and glazing technology have helped to create what it is calling a ‘transparent stage of human life’ in cities across the world, the CPD aims to inform and inspire with what is possible in the design and construction of curtain walling.

It includes a whistle-stop guide to the history of curtain walling – from the first curtain walled buildings designed by architect Peter Ellis  in Liverpool in the 1860s, through the Bauhaus School in Dessau by Walter Gropius in the 1920s right up to the present day, and traces the first modern rainscreen cladding systems back to Scandinavia in the 1940s.

There is an overview for specifiers of the different curtain walling system types available, including clear explanations of the pros and cons of stick and unitised curtain walling in a range of applications; taking into account the size and scale of the building, glazing spans, lead times, and scaffolding and installation implications. The CPD also details the technical factors which need to be considered, including the rules, regulations and standards that apply.

As an aluminium curtain walling specialist, AluK has ensured that the CPD effectively communicates the proven benefits of aluminium systems in terms of sustainability, lifecycles and costings. It also stresses though how accurate and well-considered design, detailing and specification of the right glazing system is so critical – with implications for system manufacture and installation.

Using examples from around the world, the emphasis throughout the new CPD is on the ways that architects can use frame, scale and texture in their curtain walling designs to help realise their vision for the functional external skin of their buildings.

An important message throughout is the importance of integrating curtain walling design with the overall building design at the outset in order to accommodate the optimum façade and curtain wall system.

The CPD can be viewed as a digital webinar or delivered virtually or in person via AluK’s project team. More details are at:, the home of AluK’s digital learning content, or on: 01291 639739.