Just days after the Harvard Graduate School of Design announced that Anita Berrizbeitia would be the new chair of its Department of Landscape Architecture, the school has announced another big appointment: Professor Diane Davis will be head its Department of Urban Planning. "Davis teaches courses and options studios that examine the role of politics in planning and design, relations between urbanization and development, and socio-spatial practice at the scale of the city," the school said in a statement. "Her research focuses on urban transformations in the global south, particularly the urban social, spatial, and political conflicts that have emerged in response to globalization, informality, and political and economic violence. In her capacity as co-director of the Risk and Resilience track in the Master in Design Studies (MDes) program, Davis explores overlapping vulnerabilities in the built and natural environment and assesses their significance for planning theory and design practice." Both Davis and Berrizbeitia will assume their new roles on July 1.
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Anita Berrizbeitia has been named as the new chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture at Harvard GSD. Berrizbeitia is already quite familiar with the department as she is currently a Professor of Landscape Architecture at the GSD and the Director of its Master in Landscape Architecture degree programs. "Berrizbeitia is a landscape architect specializing in theory and criticism of 19th and 20th-century public landscapes in the United States and Europe, with particular interests in material culture, design expression, and the productive functions and roles of landscape in processes of urbanization," Harvard GSD said in a press release. "Her research on Latin American cities and landscapes centers on the creative hybridization of local and foreign cultural practices as a response to a centuries-old process of global cultural exchange; the role of large-scale infrastructural projects on territorial organization; and the interface between landscape and emerging urbanization." Berrizbeitia will assume her new role on July 1.
The Harvard Graduate School of Design has named Erik L’Heureux as the winner of the 2015 Wheelwright Prize. L’Heureux is an American architect and current professor at the National University of Singapore; he also heads up his own firm called Pencil Office. Along with the prestigious accolade comes a $100,000 traveling fellowship for L’Heureux to study new approaches to contemporary design for two years. L’Heureux's proposal, Hot and Wet: The Equatorial City and the Architectures of Atmosphere, asked how architecture can help Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Pondicherry, Lagos, and São Paulo mediate the impacts of climate change while simultaneously responding to urbanization. L’Heureux presented his proposal in mid-April at the GSD alongside other finalists Malkit Shoshan from Amsterdam and Quynh Vantu from London. “We commend L’Heureux, Shoshan, and Vantu, who are each working impressively to broaden the definition and possibilities of architectural practice,” said K. Michael Hays, Eliot Noyes Professor of Architectural Theory and Associate Dean of Academic Affairs at Harvard GSD. “L’Heureux is an example of an architect with a strong practice who has developed a serious intellectual project that relates organically to his own work. His proposal is not just about technology and efficiency, but deals with the politicization of ecologies and economies in a complicated region and architecture’s complicity in difficult global issues.”
Harvard's Graduate School of Design has named John Peterson, founder of the non-profit Public Architecture, as the new curator of the Loeb Fellowship. The fellowship consists of architects, landscape architects, journalists, and more studying the built environment. Peterson will step into the role in January, succeeding James Stockard who served in the position for 16 years and is an alumnus of the fellowship. "John has built an impressive organization and impactful career focusing on societal engagement through the agency of design,” said Charles Waldheim, Chair of Harvard GSD’s Department of Landscape Architecture and head of the Loeb Curator search committee, in a statement. “His capacity to articulate and enable design to play a role in the service of broader publics, often in very challenging conditions, promises to renew the Loeb program’s longstanding commitments in this area." Peterson founded Public Architecture in 2002 and led his own practice, Peterson Architects, from 1993 to 2010. He holds degrees from RISD, taught at the California College of the Arts as well as the University of Texas at Austin, and was a Loeb Fellow in 2006. In a statement, the GSD said, "Peterson has played an important part in defining the concept of “public interest design,” which has evolved in recent years into a significant field of practice."
The Harvard Graduate School of Design has announced the three potential awardees of the 2015 Wheelwright Prize, a travel-based architectural research grant valued at $100,000. Each year, one architect from approximately 200 applicants bags the prize. Established in 1935 at a time when foreign travel was limited to an elite few and then known as the Arthur C. Wheelwright Traveling Fellowship, the prize used to be awarded solely to GSD alumni. It has now become an international competition welcoming early-career architects (within 15 years of earning an architectural degree) from around the world to bring in new blood, fresh ideas, and cross-cultural exchange. The number of countries represented has grown from 46 the previous year to 51 this year, including Bosnia, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Poland, Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Zimbabwe and more. The seven-person jury of architects has selected three finalists to present their research proposals at the Harvard Graduate School of Design on April 16, with the winner to be announced at the end of the month. To inspire the next generation of Wheelwright prizewinners, the winner of the 2013 Wheelwright Prize, Gia Wolff, will present "Floating City: The Community-Based Architecture of Parade Floats," reporting on her research on over the past two years on carnival festivals. "The idea is not just about travel—the act of going and seeing the world—but it is about binding the idea of geography to themes and issues that hold great potential relevance to contemporary practice," said Harvard GSD Dean Mohsen Mostafavi in a statement. The three 2015 finalists are as follows: Erik L’Heureux, Assistant Professor at the National University of Singapore, presenting: “Hot and Wet: The Equatorial City and the Architectures of Atmosphere.” Malkit Shoshan, founder of think tank, FAST (Foundation for Achieving Seamless Territory) Amsterdam, presenting: “Architecture and Conflict: Pre-Cycling the Compound” Quynh Vantu, Award-winning Architect, London, presenting : “On Movement: The Threshold and its Shaping of Culture and Spatial Experience.”
Hailed as one of the most important modern houses in the United Kingdom, the Wimbledon home that British architect Richard Rogers designed for his parents in 1967 has been gifted to the Harvard Graduate School of Design. Situated on a long and narrow wooded plot adjoining a major road, the house was designed for maximum privacy and seclusion by Rogers and his then wife Su. Rogers reportedly described it as “a transparent tube with solid boundary walls,” and a precursor to the acclaimed Pompidou Center in Paris which he designed with architect Renzo Piano. Unification of skin and structure is a permeating theme throughout both edifices, with a delicate lattice of steel and glass meshing together. Inside, the house is supported by five prefabricated steel frames. To compensate for the all-glass principal facades, the boundary walls are made of prefabricated insulated panels to provide a sense of closure. The home has stayed with the family since its construction, despite briefly going on the market in 2013 for nearly $4.8 million just five months after being awarded a Grade II heritage listing. In 1998, Rogers’ son Ab and his family moved in, adapting and extending the home for their own needs, but the signature yellow-painted steel frame and double-glazed facades prevail. The glazed roof, meanwhile, zipped tight with neoprene (a substitute for putty), is solar-reflecting, evidence that Rogers was thinking ahead of his time. The residence, which represented British architecture in the 1967 Paris Biennale, is noted for its adaptability, with moveable partitions on a neoprene jointing system facilitating reconfiguration of the space to create private areas or open it up for guests. Inspired by the USA’s West Coast, the sunny facade bespeaks a love of color that permeates the interior, with surfaces in lurid Crayola hues such as apple green and sunflower yellow. The donation of the landmark residence is being handled by Rogers’ charity, the Richard Rogers Charitable Settlement.
Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) has announced seven finalists for the $100,000 Wheelwright Grant which is awarded annually for travel-based architectural research. This prize was first given in 1935 to purely GSD grads until it was revamped in 2013 to be an open competition. The 2014 competition received nearly 200 submissions from 46 countries. The jury awarded special commendation to seven individuals for their exceptional design talent and imaginative research proposals. The winner will be announced on April 30th. Jose Ahedo Studio Ahedo Barcelona Wheelwright proposal: Domesticated Grounds: Design and Domesticity Within Animal Farming Systems. Jose Ahedo established his own firm, Studio Ahedo, in 2010. His first completed project is Blanca, a dairy complex in the Pyrenees, which includes 13 buildings comprising animal facilities, research labs, and an education center. Ana Dana Beros Think Space Zagreb, Croatia Wheelwright proposal: INTERMUNDIA: Re-Imagining Border-Scape in Mediterranean Countries. Ana Dana Beros is an independent architect, curator, editor, educator, and exhibition designer. Alison Crawshaw Alison Crawshaw Architecture London Wheelwright proposal: The Poison and the Cure: Rubbish in the Information Age. Alison wrote a thesis on illegal building practices in Rome during her time as a Rome Scholar. Masaaki Iwamoto Vo Trong Nghia Architects Ho Chi Minh City Wheelwright proposal: Tropical Skin: Study on New Building Envelope for Tropical Megacities. His work includes low-cost housing, a kindergarten, and workplaces, has been widely published. Jimenez Lai Bureau Spectacular Chicago Wheelwright proposal: Caricatures, Fictions and Hyperboles: A Revisit of the World of Wonders. Jimenez Lai is the principal of Bureau Spectacular and an assistant architecture professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Sean Lally Weathers Chicago Wheelwright proposal: Climate Design: The Architecture of Energies. Sean Lally is the founder of the firm Weathers and assistant architecture professor at the University of Illinois in Chicago. Kaz Yoneda Takram Design Engineering Tokyo Wheelwright proposal: Utopics of Cities: Amorphous Contemporaneity of Ideal. Kaz Yoneda is the founder of the Architecture and Space Design Unit at Takram Design Engineering
Yesterday, Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design officially announced the winner of the first Wheelwright Prize, a $100,000 traveling fellowship aimed at cultivating new forms of architectural research through cultural exchange. The jury awarded the fellowship to Gia Wolff, a Harvard graduate and Brooklyn-based architect, for her original proposal Floating City: The Community-Based Architecture of Parade Floats. The young architect and professor, who currently leads her own practice, uniquely explored the cultural significance and design of the traditional parade float, which frequently transforms cities and brings people together during carnival festivals all throughout the world. The competition generated 231 submissions from 45 countries "The Wheelright Prize is about putting a voyage together in order to discover, and learn from, a particular architectural production somewhere distant in the world. Gia, whose work is all about imagination, has identified the parade float—in such cities as Rio de Janeiro, Nice, and Goa— as an ephemeral form of architecture both laden with cultural exuberance and remarkable for the communitarian organization it requires,” commented jury member Farès el-Dahdah in a statement. Applicants were asked to submit a portfolio of their work, a research proposal, as well as a detailed travel itinerary specifying exactly where, how, and what they intend to achieve with the $100,000 grant, which will fund 2 years of research. The competition stems from the Arthur Wheelwright Traveling Fellowship, established in 1935, exclusively open to Harvard graduates, and awarded to distinguished architects like I.M Pei and Elliot Noyes. In keeping with the school’s commitment to the sharing and exchanging of ideas between countries, cultures, themes, and issues, the Wheelwright Prize was opened to early-career architects practicing all over the world.
The Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) has announced the appointment of Iñaki Ábalos as chair of the Department of Architecture. Ábalos is currently a Professor in Residence at the GSD where he has lead studios, lectures, and seminars grounded in technology and history,with a focus on the thermodynamics of architecture. As a founding member of both Ábalos + Sentkiewicz Arquitectos and Ábalos and Herraros, his work has focused on the intersection between architecture, technology, landscape, and culture. He will assume his new post July 1, replacing current chair Preston Scott Cohen. “The School will undoubtedly benefit from his deep intellectual commitment to the field of architecture as his passion as both an educator and an architect," said Mohsen Mostafavi, Dean of the GSD, in a statement. "I have no doubt that he will make great contributions to the culture of collaboration within the GSD and to the rest of the university." Ábalos received his masters and PhD in architecture from Superior Technical School of Architecture of Madrid at the Technical University of Madrid, where he went on to teach, eventually becoming Chaired Professor and Director of the Master in environmental and landscape studies. Ábalos has since held faculty positions at Federale Lausanne, Columbia University, Princeton University, Cornell University, and the Architectural Association. He has also written extensively on architecture, with works including Le Corbusier Skyscrapers, Tower and Office, Natural-Artificial, The Good Life, and Picturesque Atlas.
The annual Curry Stone Prize, which honors design for social change, has shaken up its awards program this year. Previously laurels went to a Grand Prize winner, leaving several teams as runners-up. But in recognition of Curry Stone's fifth cycle, this year five winners will equally share the prize, including a cash award of $25,000 each. Announced this week, the 2012 winners are: Center for Urban Pedagogy, aka CUP (Brooklyn, New York); Liter Of Light (Manila, Philippines); MASS Design (Boston, MA); Riwaq (Ramallah, Palestine); and Jeanne van Heeswijk (Rotterdam, Netherlands). Once again the Curry Stone Foundation has teamed up with Harvard's Graduate School of Design to create a larger educational event around the awards ceremony, which takes place at the GSD on November 15. The day following the winning teams will deliver presentations on their work and participate in panel discussions that are free and open to the public. Some winners will be familiar to those in the architecture and design world—MASS Design, for example, has received previous accolades and coverage for projects like the redesign of a hospital in the Burera District of Rwanda and has gone on to establish collaborations with NGOs—while other organizations have been initiating change at a local grassroots level: Brooklyn-based CUP facilitates communication on community issues by collaborating with artists and designers; Liter of Light offers inexpensive alternatives to electricity in informal settlements in the Philippines; Riwaq documents and preserves Palestinian culture through restoration projects; Jeanne Van Heeswijk gained attention for recasting derelict areas in Dutch cities into dynamic public spaces. Joseph Grima, Elvira Dyangani Ose, Teddy Cruz, and Clifford Curry, who founded the prize with Delight Stone in 2008, served as the 2012 jury. Read more about the five winners: CUP Liter of Light MASS Design Riwaq Jeanne van Heeswijk
Asensio_mah & Harvard's Graduate School of Design's moss-covered installation is architecture on the cellular levelWhen visitors stroll through Quebec's Redford Gardens, the first of many large installations they come upon is Surface Deep, an undulating, moss-covered structure designed by international architecture firm asensio_mah in collaboration with students from Harvard's Graduate School of Design. It was built last summer, but with this year's Metis International Garden Festival, Surface Deep is once again getting major foot traffic in the most literal sense of the word. Surface Deep is a mountable, climbable series of snaking panels that invites visitors to explore it in its entirety, from its long, sweeping form to its small, mossy nooks. The panels vary in height depending on their angle, but have a constant width of 0.5m. The plywood frame and the patterned overlays were made at the Harvard Graduate School of Design's Fabrication Laboratory over a two-week period using CNC milling, robotic water jet cutting and welding. White celltech plastic trays were constructed to house the moss substrate, which were then fixed within the plywood frame and covered with panels. The parts were shipped to Quebec and assembled on site with steel anchor plates. Once the team had an idea of the overall gesture of the installation, they worked with a local biologist, Suzanna Campeau at Bryophyta Technologies, to determine which species of mosses were best suited to the microclimates created by the varying orientations and lean of the individual panels. Some panels, for example, receive full sunlight while others are in constant shade. According to the students, "the first 11 units were made with Niphotrichum canescens (a sun-loving species), unit 12 is planted with Callicladium haldanianum while the other units remaining (13 to 22) were made with a mixture of Callicladium haldanianum and other shade-loving, forest species such as Pleurozium schreberii and Ptilium crista-castrensis." Campeau grew the moss on a geotextile, a permeable fabric often used with soil for erosion control or slope stabilization. The "moss textile" was then installed on a plywood substrate and into the panel system where it's held in place by the webbed overlay. The team used the cellular structure of moss as their design inspiration for the web-like panel pattern, though they have practical applications as well. The panels help with water retention, keep the moss protected and actually provide it with some shade, albeit on the micro level. It requires watering, but the overall maintenance is quite low. And though Surface Deep is not considered permanent, the installation will be kept in the park for several years to come.
Fifty-one years after his graduation the late Max Bond Jr.'s influence is once again felt in his alma mater, Harvard's Graduate School of Design. An exhibit and celebration of his life and work opened there on Monday September 14th and will run through October 18th. The exhibit takes a close look at Max Bond's personal life, his passion for social equity, and his professional design work. Bond made all three areas of his life inseparable. In an 1981 interview with Paul Broches in the Journal of Architectural Education he pronounced that "Progress means trying to improve the lot of the people in the world generally and to have architecture contribute toward that goal." The exhibit displays Bond's design work from Ghana to Harlem to Washington DC that shows what may be Max Bond's most important contribution, taking strongly held social ideals and turning them into built form. This posthumous lesson is specially timely for a class starting their design education in the midst of what many consider to be the worst economic down turn in over 80 years. Life and Works of J. Max Bond, Jr.: Practice, Education, and Activism September 14th-October 18th Related lecture: Max Bond, Multiculturalism, and Social Equity in the Built Environment October 2nd - 3:30PM Harvard University's Graduate School of Design