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A Partnership of AIA Los Angeles and USC Architecture: BIM EDGE + BIM GAP
August 22–23, 2014
BIM GAP will feature presentations about the bridging GAPs between BIM tools (analysis, construction, facilities management, and more) and also bridging the GAPs between BIM people (contractors, architects, owners, managers, subs, consultants). Learn how professionals are dealing with these gaps towards realizing the full potential of BIM. Who do you call when you need BIM guidance? EDGE examines potential partners in working with BIM beyond your firm’s current capabilities: BIM coordinators, consultants, modeling services, others.

Architecture and the City Festival
September 1–30, 2014
The American Institute of Architects, San Francisco chapter (AIA San Francisco) and the Center for Architecture + Design announce the 11th annual Architecture and the City festival, the nation’s largest architectural festival of its kind. Taking place in San Francisco every September, the month-long celebration features behind the scenes and walking tours, films, exhibitions, lectures and more, providing opportunities for participants to engage with the local architecture community and experience design in a myriad of ways throughout the city. The 2014 Architecture and the City festival theme, Home: My San Francisco, will examine the shifting nature of home, the different elements that contribute to its definition, and its relation to the urban fabric. Over 40 festival programs will explore the cultural richness and diversity of our local architectural and design community as well as provide a platform for conversation about our changing landscape and its implications for a city in a time of rapidly intensifying housing needs.

San Francisco Living: Home Tours
September 20–21, 2014
AIA San Francisco and the Center for Architecture + Design are excited to announce the 12th annual San Francisco Living: Home Tours, a two-day open house event featuring a select number of modern residences. The popular weekend showcases a wide variety of architectural styles, neighborhoods and residences, including single-family homes, contemporary renovations and multi-family residences, and is the first tour series in the Bay Area to promote residential design from the architect's point of view. Throughout the weekend, tour participants can see some of the city's latest residential projects from the inside out, meet design teams, explore housing trends, and discover innovative design solutions that inspire unique San Francisco living.

Archtoberfest San Diego 2014
October 1–30, 2014
Archtoberfest San Diego 2014 is a collaboratively-operated initiative aimed at establishing an annual, month-long program of public events and activities pertaining to architecture, design, planning and sustainability.

New Urbanism Film Festival
November 2014
The primary goal of the New Urbanism Film Festival is to renew the dialogue about urban planning with a broader audience. The Festival brings in movies, short films, speakers, on the topics of architecture, public health, bicycle advocacy, urban design, public transit, inner-city gardens, to name a few. 

 

 

 

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Hidden
« 'Tower of Power' Takes Renewable Energy Production to New Heights | Main | Steven Song's View on the World Architecture Festival: Winning Projects and Final Thoughts »
Tuesday
Nov302010

Steven Song's View on the World Architecture Festival: Lectures and Panel Discussions 

FORM reader and founding partner of think tank team VIUM, Steven Song, attended the World Achitecture Festival, November 3-5 in Barcelona, Spain. What follows are his ruminations on his experience and his overall takeaway from the event:

From November 3 to November 5, 2010, an international group of architects, urban designers, landscape architects, critics, and students convened at Centre de Convencions Internacional de Barcelona (CCIB), the venue for the 2010 World Architecture Festival. World Architecture Festival was launched in 2008 as a celebratory conference that features seminars and panel discussions with leading figures in the field of architecture and urban designers, and competition entries of exemplary projects.

There were well over 500 submitted from all over the world. Shortlisted entries were sorted into different program categories – housing, cultural, sports, office, etc. – and at the end of the conference the jury selected category winners and one “World Building of the Year.”

The conference revolved around the theme of ‘transformations’. The theme was presented in several orientations.

Sean Griffiths of FAT Architecture offered his critique on current architectural practices with their obsession with space-making, and urged architects to celebrate ‘taste.’ Then, learning from his interpretation of Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown’s celebration of the communicative function of architecture, Grffiths argued that semantic codes can be manipulated to create an original and meaningful architecture.

Bjarke Ingels of BIG shared with the participants his view on the future of automobile industry and how it will transform city living. According to Ingels, driverless automobile is the solution to traffic congestions and human errors in driving.

David Chipperfield and Julian Harrap’s team dealt with the theme of transformation via their Neues Museum renovation project. In order for the design team to build upon the existing structure and its site, their original relevance has to be interpreted first. This notion of ‘interpretation of a historic object’ brings architects to an interesting dilemma. We cannot transcend the situated nature of historical understanding. We always find ourselves standing in front of some historical objects, whether it is our immediate site, or a city, or in this case, an existing ruin.

And here, the architects discussed among themselves how best to approach this relic of the past upon which they were to build. When architects have such existing architectural fragments, should the missing parts be filled in with design intentions? Or should they be left barren, purposefully, so that the spectators who come to experience the building can fill in with their imaginations? I tend to like an approach that lies somewhere between the two ends, because understanding of an object from the past is always understanding it as something. Reproduction of the original meaning (as a relic of the past) is impossible and such prejudgment in the viewpoint of our present-day understanding makes interpretation possible and richer in meaning. So leaving a wiggle room for the viewer’s participation allows for the true experience of art. And such experience can be more interesting and positively more complex by fusing another layer of structure and fragments –by the new architects – to be read and deciphered by the viewers.

Joe Noero of Noero Wolff Architects explored transformation of an apartheid-era township through his civic/cultural project in a formerly Boer War concentration camp area – Red Location in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

Notice the saw-tooth roof factory in this poster and juxtapose it with the roof of Noero’s museum -- the saw-tooth profile of industrial buildings is interpreted by South Africans, and now by Noero, as a historic symbol of righteous battle for freedom and revolution of South African workers and trade unions.

In the panel discussion titled “Transforming Work and Public Space with Art,” Will Alsop presented his design methodology. For him, art and architecture is inseparable, even undistinguishable. At another panel discussion, Paul Finch, the head director of the conference, ‘unofficially’ quoted Alsop, “Form has nothing to do with function” as his response to Louis Sullivan’s famous dictum, “Form ever follows function.”

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