Is David Adjaye Obama's favorite architect?

May 6, 2013

Here's a look at David Adjaye, one of the lead architects of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture now under construction on the historic Washington D.C. National Mall.

The 4:45 minute video comes courtesy of the United Kingdom's Crane.tv, a video magazine that examines culture, art, design and fashion. The Tanzanian-born UK Adjaye—who also has offices in New York City—discusses the $500 million museum and how he approached the project.

"The struggle and the blood that was spilt by this extraordinary people has firstly shaped a kind of a unique country in the world—and, actually shaped the world," the 46-year-old leader of Adjaye Associates said.

His design partners in the project are the Freelon Group, Davis Brody Bond and the SmithGroup.

And then there's this: At a state dinner last year honoring British Prime Minister David Cameron, Adjaye and wife Ashley Shaw-Scott had a seat at the head table with President Barack Obama. The party of 21 included Warren Buffett, George Clooney and Michelle Obama.

The appearance helped feed speculation that Adjaye would be the president's pick as architect of the future Obama presidential library. In response to an Architectural Record story in March on his purported involvement the proposed library—and also citing the British press' reference to Obama's fandom—Adjaye wrote:  "I have no involvement in such a project and I take issue with the misleading nature of this piece." But added: "Obviously, if in the future there was such an opportunity – we would be delighted and honoured to be considered."