Michael Speaks and Florencia Pita present a new initiative involving exchange between Stanford University and SCI-Arc. Pita explains the main points of the evening are design, collaboration and education. Speaks explains that there will be 10 minute presentations. The first presentations are made by members of the SHL (Stanford Humanities Lab): Michael Shanks, Jeffrey Schnapps and Henry Lowen. After some questions, SCI-Arc Faculty Hernan Diaz Alonso, Eric Owen Moss and Wes Jones make presentations. Brett Steele from the Architectural Association, London, joins the panel after the presentations.
Video Archive | Education (18)
Peter Cook begins his lecture with a discussion of the importance of “weirdo schools,” a term he uses to describe SCI-Arc and Cooper Union, and a characteristic he is attempting to instill in the Barlett School. He goes on to discuss the cyclical nature of things and the potential for self-parody. Cook specifically discusses the attempt by another architect to create a Plug-in City based on the Archigram project and his own work on the Kunsthaus Graz and its connection to his Archigram work.
Exhibition designer Thomas Hartman of IQ Magic discusses the interaction of architectural space and media in an educational project for the California state archives. He describes creating levels of interactivity while moving through a museum, so that vistors learn by immersion in the context. He raises the question of authenticity versus reproduction. He proposes the creation of environments that not only guide people through the space, but also provide a sense of discovery. Hartman discusses the importance of language systems and iconography in order to communicate across cultural lines. Acknowledging that everybody has different perceptions of Los Angeles, Thomas Hartman wonders if it’s possible to create a space that would be meaningful to a broad range of Angelenos, and provide an accurate window into the reality of the city. Large public buildings, such as sports arenas, might provide an opportunity to create this kind of experience, through layers of information.
Exhibition designer Thomas Hartman of IQ Magic discusses the interaction of architectural space and media in an educational project for the California state archives. He describes creating levels of interactivity while moving through a museum, so that vistors learn by immersion in the context. He raises the question of authenticity versus reproduction. He proposes the creation of environments that not only guide people through the space, but also provide a sense of discovery. Hartman discusses the importance of language systems and iconography in order to communicate across cultural lines.
Ed Soja proposes “Third Space,” an alternative critical spatial awareness in which everything social, historical, imagined, experienced, and spatial comes together. He discusses the precedence of the spatial imagination over the historical imagination in contemporary architectural education. Soja critiques thinking about space as material form, stressing the importance of imagined space.
Michael Rotondi introduces Kevin Rhowbotham, an architect practicing with the collaborative Fashion Architecture and Taste (FAT), and teacher at the Bartlett School. Rhowbotham earned a masters from Cornell under Colin Rowe, and completed his doctorate at Cambridge. He has just published the book Form To Programme.
Kevin Rhowbotham recounts his experiences as an architecture instructor at various schools in England. Teaching his students how to establish form first and program second, his methodology subvert many of the orthodoxies of architectural education. He encourages students to take their drawings and models seriously as art, and notes that one drawback of this is making material costs significant, including professional photography. He tries to prepare his graduate students at the Bartlett School to be leaders in their field. Rhowbotham discusses the Fashion Architecture and Taste (FAT) group. They originally formed to publish a magazine, which never happened. However they did produce several projects. One is a house for a family which he proposed housing the parents in a “menopausal” modernist box, and the children in a “pubescent” pink “bloid.”
Kevin Rhowbotham discusses the Bartlett School. One of the problems in London in the 1980s was that contemporary architecture did not have a face. He started teaching his students to generate an abstract form as the point of departure of the projects, as opposed to a blank piece of paper. Since program was introduced at a later stage, Rhowbotham called this “Form to Program,” and it enabled his students to produce projects that were outside the formal norms.