Design for Social Impact
May 25–August 3, 2014
Based on the idea that design is a way of looking at the world with an eye for changing it, the Museum of Design Atlanta (MODA) presents Design for Social Impact, an original exhibition offering a look at how designers, engineers, students, professors, architects and social entrepreneurs use design to solve the problems of the 21st century.

Japanese Design Today 100
June 27–July 19, 2014
The Japan Foundation presents the World premiere of the exhibition Japanese Design Today 100, which opens at UCLA’s Department of Architecture & Urban Design at Perloff Hall. This exhibition showcases the Designscape of contemporary Japan through 100 objects of Japanese design: 89 objects created since 2010 that are well known in Japan, as well as 11 objects that represent the origin of Japanese post-war modern product design. These 100 product designs are displayed in 10 categories: Classic Japanese Design, Furniture & Housewares, Tableware & Cookware, Apparel & Accessories, Children, Stationery, Hobbies, Healthcare, Disaster Relief, and Transportation.

BAM/PFA New Building Topping Out Celebration
July 17, 2014
Construction is nearing midpoint at the downtown Berkeley site of the future home of the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA). Workers will soon be erecting the last of the steel beams that form the frame of this dynamic building. To celebrate this important milestone, BAM/PFA invites its Bay Area friends and neighbors to a “topping out” ceremony on Addison Street, between Shattuck Avenue and Oxford Street.

39th Annual American Craft Council San Francisco Show
August 8–10, 2014

The American Craft Council returns to San Francisco for its 39th Annual American Craft Council San Francisco Show this August 8-10, 2014 at Fort Mason Center. As the largest juried fine craft show on the West Coast, the 2014 San Francisco Show is expected to draw more than 12,000 fine craft collectors and design enthusiasts.

Conversations in Place 2014
August 10, 2014
ow in its third year, Conversations in Place 2014 begins another series of illuminating explorations of “Southern California – Yesterday and Tomorrow” at the historic Rancho Los Alamitos. The 4-part series begins Sunday, August 10 and continues through Sunday, November 2. The series begins with W. Richard West, Jr, President and CEO of The Autry National Center of the American West, Milford Wayne Donaldson, FAIA, chairman of the United States Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, and Pamela Seager, Executive Director of Rancho Los Alamitos, and Architect Stephen Farneth, FAIA, founding partner of the award-winning historic preservation firm Architectural Resources Group, in conversation about the place of museums and historic sites in shaping the story of Southern California. Can these institutions escape the straightjacket of the time to better interpret history to the 21st century?

NOW AND NEXT 2014 Symposium on Technology for Design and Construction
August 13–15, 2014
Meet thought leaders and colleagues interested in architecture, engineering, construction, open BIM Exchange, software trends and more. Learn about the innovations that are moving companies and people forward
including: where and how design and delivery is shifting; which software applications are transformative; best practices for collaborative project delivery; how to engage with the global BIM community. Connect with and hear from the best and the brightest such as Jordan Brandt, AutoDesk; Deke Smith, buildingSMART alliance; Ray Topping, Fiatech; Bill East, Prairie  Sky Consulting (formerly of the US Army Corps of Engineers).

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. 



Deadline: August 18

Deadline: September 2
Hansgrohe+Axor Das Design Competition

Deadline: September 5

2014 Designer Dream Bath Competition

Deadline: December 31
Kitchen Design Contest
Wolf and Sub-Zero 

FORM Event Images

Industry Partners




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Preservation: A Conversation with Leo Marmol, FAIA

Richard Neutra's Kaufmann House in Palm Springs, which was restored by Marmol Radziner. Leo Marmol, the firm's managing principal, will speak on the restoration of Modern architecture on Thursday in Los Altos, California. Photo by David Glomb.
To hear Leo Marmol, FAIA, speak on the restoration of Modern architecture is to hear one of the most accomplished, thoughtful practitioners of the craft. With the award-winning restoration of Richard Neutra’s Kaufmann House in Palm Springs, he and Ron Radziner, his partner in the firm Marmol Radziner, established themselves as key players in the then-nascent realm of Modernist preservation. Where before little attention had been paid to the significant structures (resulting in countless sad losses), the work they undertook was part of a groundswell of appreciation and awareness. On Thursday, March 14, Marmol will speak on Modern preservation in Los Altos, California, as part of the Los Altos Neutra House Architecture Speaker Series. We had the chance to talk with him recently about his firm’s restoration work, his philosophy on restoration, and why living in an historic building doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice modern conveniences for authenticity.



How has architectural restoration changed since you first worked on the Kaufmann residence?



Our approach hasn’t changed. Each project is different and has a different methodology and perspective. The Kaufmann House was an incredibly academic restoration process. We were able to take back to what it was in 1947. It had been transformed into full time residence and had many additions. Our clients were going to turn it back into a vacation house. Rarely do we have that opportunity. Typically, we have to have the houses work as full-time houses. Our clients have demands and expectations about how we want those houses to perform. 



Other houses are simply different. All historic properties have the burden to uncover as much as possible. We can learn from the actual construction and the intent of the original architect. 



How has your restoration work informed the rest of your practice? 



Restoration work absolutely informs our new projects. We only work from a preservation perspective for modern structures. We want to learn from those [older] buildings. The ideas, issues and concepts employed during those projects are very relevant today. You could even argue that they’re more relevant. The desire to connect to exterior environment—we’re even more aware of that. The goal of simplifying the interior experience—that’s relevant in a world that’s very distracting and chaotic. Houses become a place of peace and repose. They’re a nurturing, supportive place for the family, where you can be visually protected from the chaos of daily life. The Modern goal of connection and simplification is the real root of sustainability and a real issue for today’s families. 


Have your clients ever asked you to do something with a historic property you felt uncomfortable about, or are your clients a self-selecting group?



Our clients are self-selecting, but we have been asked to do things that have been controversial in the preservation community. These things deserve the same care as things that are less controversial. If we have to make changes to historic fabric, we do it within standards defined for preservation and with respect and research. We’re prepared to defend decisions. For example, we’ve been asked to take houses back to starting point—where the original architect designed the additions. In that case, taking it back to true state is a controversial decision. 



Disagreements and discussions in our profession are healthy. There isn’t one answer to a design problem. Owners of historic houses deserve a huge amount of respect and care from our preservation community. They’re asked to make sacrifices that are not necessary or appropriate. We can’t ask them not to have big-screen TVs or modern appliances. We have to accommodate their expectations—otherwise more significant houses will be destroyed. We can only support so many museums. These houses have to be occupied by real people, families and pets. It’s the responsibility within the preservation community to support those lives. 



Are people more aware of preservation nowadays?



There has been a growth and expansion in the interest in Modern buildings. When we started on the Kaufmann House in 1993, there was little known and little conversation about modern preservation. The interest has grown up during our career. Now there’s a level of curiosity and interest and passion that simply did not exist. To see that, be able to participate in that excitement is wonderful. There’s also the institutional growth with the Getty and Palm Springs Modernism Week. 



We’re very fortunate to have had opportunity to work with some significant works by brilliant architects at a time when there wasn’t a lot of interest and to say this is possible, this is fruitful, this is valuable. There are ways to do it to preserve it and provide a way of life. You don’t have to sacrifice your life. Historic residences provide all the opportunities you’d have in non-historic houses—and you can live in an important building.



What are some of the biggest mistakes people make when doing a renovation/restoration of a significant property?



The biggest mistake is to hire a design firm that doesn’t have an interest in the historic process or interest in the time period. They come from a perspective where they want to make changes but without a willingness to understand the traditions they are messing with. Not to say that people who don’t have experience can’t to do it, they just have to have a willingness to have these conversations. 



What do you see as your role in preserving the legacy of historic 20th-century architecture?



We hope our role is one of advocacy and support for people who own extraordinary houses or buildings. We hope we can be seen in the profession as being willing to tackle the challenging projects and push boundaries of what’s acceptable to the preservation community in support of people who live in our buildings and want to support them in their process. Often we get calls from people who want to refinish wood, change a fireplace, fix stonework and are worried that they will do it in a way that will reap criticism. We refer people to help them, and give small tips and suggestions. We wish we could help more. 



What would you say to an architect in 40 or 50 years on who might be undertaking a restoration of a Marmol Radziner residence? 



Down the line, we hope they continue the modern ideology that prizes quality, beauty and efficiency. We hope our buildings exemplify those ideas and hope that those who alter our buildings in the future will respect those same goals. They will be changed. If you care for materials in a modern way, have to respect their use, employ them with respect—that’s all we can ask.


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