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Four recent AA graduates and year out student Alix Biehler have been featured in the latest issue of Blueprint magazine in their review of the 2017 UK end-of-year shows.

Alix, who completed third year under the tutelage of Ryan Dillon and David Greene in Intermediate 5, was featured for her project, Moonday, which explores how we would experience life and the passage of time on the moon. Blueprint noted Alix’s ‘glowing constellation of egg-like living modules [which] celebrate the self-contained architectural environment’.

Other projects featured in the magazine, all by 2017 AA Diploma Honours graduates, were ‘Shared Roof’ by Jisoo Hwang, a tensile roof structure bridging the gap between housing and a school as a response to the ‘social and physical detachment caused by fragmented urban spaces’, Rory Sherlock’s work on the architectural form of information and the appropriation and management of the internet, Jonathan Cheng’s immersive audio experience ‘Where is the centre?’, and Nathan Su’s ‘hypnotic’ film, Through Leviathan’s Eyes, imagining a future in which reality is constructed collaboratively.

Find out more about all these projects at http://pr2017.aaschool.ac.uk.

Image: Alix Biehler

Date Submitted: 23/10/2017

Radical Projects: Transforming Economies with Architecture
Date: 30 October 2017 
Time: 6.30-8.30pm
Venue: Future Cities Catapult
Speakers: Kelly Doran, Senior Director, Mass Design Group
Harriet Harriss, Senior Tutor, Royal College of Art

Architecture can be a catalyst of economic, social and cultural change, with the micro-economy of a single architecture project often transforming areas of greatest need. Mass Design Group, founded in 2008, have embraced architecture’s powerful agency as their design ethos. This talk will showcase the work of Mass Design Group in the field of healthcare and education to showcase how architecture can contribute to economic development from the ground up. The talk will juxtapose Mass Design Group’s projects in Africa to perspectives on the relationship between design and conditions of scarcity. It will also question the broader purpose of architecture in the current globalised world, outlining its role in shaping communities that are sustainable in the long term.  

Book tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/radical-projects-transforming-economies-with-architecture-tickets-37611582255

Date Submitted: 20/10/2017

Alumna Albane Duvillier (AADipl 2016) will have one of her student projects showcased in a forthcoming exhibition at the Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA), part of Teesside University.

The exhibition, entitled Idea Home Show, takes a political look at how residents and practitioners working between art, architecture and activism are proposing solutions for alternative models for living.

Albane’s multimedia project, #Share Home @ London's Housing Struggles, was created during her fourth year at the AA under Samantha Hardingham and David Greene in Diploma Unit 7, and mapped the extent to which London’s social housing was undergoing demolition, and the number of people displaced as a result. An interactive map was distributed among residents campaigning to save their homes, and Albane produced a series of props to support the action such as banners, chairs, events, websites and videos.

Her work will feature in a section of the exhibition called The Housing Question, which aims to address social issues relating to housing across the twentieth century and in the present.  It will feature art, project case studies, writing, film, printed matter and archival materials dealing with living conditions, architecture and urban spaces under capitalism.

The exhibition will run from 21 October 2017 to 18 February 2018. Find out more by visiting the MIMA website at http://www.visitmima.com/whats-on/single/idea-home-show.

Date Submitted: 18/10/2017

Piccolomini, an exhibition of work by architect and AA unit master Pier Vittorio Aureli has opened at Betts Project, the London-based contemporary art gallery specialising in architecture, founded in 2013 by AA Member Marie Coulon.

Pier Vittorio Aureli’s pastels on paper are part of a large series developed during several years that play with the idea of the horizon line, the most fundamental datum of the landscape genre, as the most artificial and arbitrary mechanisms though which representations of space are produced.

Reflecting on the series, Aureli said: “My work deals with the genre of landscape. I’m interested in how our way of moving and circulating today has made the experience of landscape very abstract and distant. I’m interested in rendering this sense of abstraction and distance in the utmost simplest terms by referring back to the early tradition of landscape painting, especially the work of Hercules Seghers and Jacob Van Ruisdael”.

The exhibition runs until Saturday 18 November 2017. Find out more by visiting www.bettsproject.com.

Image: Piccolomini series – Untitled, 2009, pastel on paper, 50 x 50 cm. Copyright the artist. Courtesy Betts Project.

Date Submitted: 9/10/2017

The Architectural Association extends its warmest congratulations and best wishes to Neave Brown who has been awarded the 2018 RIBA Royal Gold Medal, the UK’s highest honour for architecture given in recognition of a lifetime’s work.

Neave studied at the AA from 1950-1955 and went on to teach at the school, as well as serve on the AA Council.

A true visionary, he is perhaps best known for the ground-breaking housing projects he designed whilst in the architecture department of Camden council, including the Alexandra Road estate, 22-32 Winscombe Street and the Dunboyne Road estate.

Reacting to the win, Neave said: “All my work! I got it just by flying blind, I seem to have been flying all my life.

"The Royal Gold Medal is entirely unexpected and overwhelming. It's recognition of the significance of my architecture, its quality and its current urgent social relevance. Marvellous!"

Neave is the only living architect in the UK to have his entire body of work heritage listed.

Read more at architecture.com/neave-brown

Image: © Gareth Gardner

Date Submitted: 6/10/2017

AA graduate Stefan Jovanović launches Velvet Fools, a new performance salon and evening, by invitation of Will Alsop OBE RA. He invites choreographer Eleanor Bauer to co-host the first evening on October 27th in the mystical back-vaults of the Doodle Bar in Bermondsey, London. The first edition, Tarot Oracle Dance, will bring together two oracular divination systems in collaboration with a group of live-musicians, dancers and visual artists. Velvet Fools is a cultural salon, a gathering space operating on the fringe of normative frameworks. Each evening encompasses a diverse curation of visual arts, dance, live music, queer-shamanic practices and fools.

For more information visit:
www.velvetfools.com
https://www.facebook.com/velvetfools/
https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/velvet-fools-tarot-oracle-dance-tickets-37804433077

Date Submitted: 4/10/2017

RARE Architecture, the practice founded by AA alumni and former intermediate tutors Michel Da Costa Gonçalves (AAMArch 2005) and Nathalie Rozencwajg (AADipl 2001), is participating in the Shoreditch Design Triangle, part of the 2017 London Design Festival, by exhibiting The Fractal Tree in the garden of the Geffrye Museum.

The installation is the manifestation of geometrical play stemming from the growth logic of tree branches. Operating as a city sculpture and a sustainable device, the timber structure transforms itself and its environment over the course of the day.

Both metaphor and abstraction of its natural source, RARE architects’ fractal tree is an active abstraction stemming from the growth logic and recycling mechanic of nature. Crafted by advanced manufacturing, it is simultaneously an urban shading and a water collection device as well as a powerful evocation of the need for innovation associated with responsibility.

Based in London and Paris, RARE architecture sensibly exercise transversal thinking between teaching, research and commissions to envisage sustainable and human centred designs. Their projects grow from research focusing on new materials, innovative typologies and advanced modes of design and production.

The event runs until Saturday 23 September, to find out more, visit http://www.londondesignfestival.com/events/fractal-tree

Partners: ParmarBrook / Szubert Carpentry / Green Factory

Image: Maria Katsika

Date Submitted: 22/9/2017

Recent graduate Jack Hardy (AADipl 2017) brings his family of Rocking Wotsits to Oxo Tower Wharf’s ground floor Bargehouse for the London Design Festival this weekend. Rocking Wotsits are something between furniture and toys; you are invited to climb on, nudge, peculiarise, and wigwag these Wotsits to your own ends.

The show runs from 18 – 24 September 2017, 11am – 6pm, free admission.

Find out more here.

Date Submitted: 22/9/2017

AA tutor Antoni Malinowski will join a panel of high-profile practitioners at a Design Museum event on Tuesday 3 October entitled Colour in Architecture and Interiors, exploring how and why architects and designers use colour and what colour means to them and its role in their work.

Antoni Malinowski is an artist who works with pigment, light, movement and time, investigating the dynamic relationship that exists between pictorial and architectural spaces. After studying painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw and furthering his studies at the Chelsea College of Art, Malinowski has established and based his practice in London.  He is a tutor on the AA’s Foundation and Media Studies programmes.

To find out more or book, visit https://designmuseum.org/whats-on/talks-courses-and-workshops/colour-in-architecture-and-interiors.

Image: Polychromatic staircase hand painted by Antoni Malinowski, Donmar Dryden Street, London, Haworth Tompkins Architects 2014, by Valerie Bennett

Date Submitted: 21/9/2017

Essential Economics: Architecture Within Global Economic Trends
Date: 18 September 2017
Time: 6.30-8.30pm
Venue: Future Cities Catapult
Speakers: Mark Wingham, Economist, GLA
Marc Vlessing, CEO, Pocket Living
Tamsie Thomson, Director, LFA

Architecture does not operate outside of national, regional or global economies – it is firmly embedded within economic processes, actively contributing to their growth and reacting in times of crisis. What is the economic impact of architecture and the built environment today? What is the value that good architecture can deliver, and how can it be measured? Equally, how do broader economic trends impact how architecture is delivered? This talk will break down the economic impact of architecture to help architects understand the value of their work within the broader context of globalised exchanges of labour, time, knowledge or capital.
To access the 10 free places use the code: AASCHOOL on eventbrite. 
Date Submitted: 11/9/2017

AA alumnus Calvin Chua (AADipl 2011) and colleague Dongwoo Yim have presented a full-scale mock-up of a North Korean apartment at the inaugural Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism. The installation, called Pyongyang Sallim, offers South Koreans a glimpse into what domestic life is like for people in their neighbouring territory for the first time.

Chua, who leads the AA Visiting School in Pyongyang, has spent years researching architecture and urbanism in North Korea. He told Dezeen: “We decided to create a model house because it's the easiest way to understand what life is like in North Korea. We felt that for a South Korean audience to be able to actually experience the interior of a North Korean apartment, that would be quite fruitful”.

The mock-up was created based on Chua’s personal experiences of dwellings in the North Korean capital, as well as friends’ descriptions, and photographs.

Read more about Pyongyang Sallim at Dezeen.com or read the Daily Mail feature here: www.dailymail.co.uk/news/North-Korean-flat-display-South-Korean-capital

The exhibition runs until 5 November 2017: seoulbiennale.org/en.

Image: Calvin Chua

Date Submitted: 5/9/2017

AA student Roberto Boettger has been awarded a RIBA Wren Insurance Association Scholarship.

The scholarships aim to support outstanding Part 2 students who have the potential to make a significant contribution in the field of architecture. Recipients receive £5,000 each and the opportunity to receive mentoring from one of the constituent architecture firms at the Wren.

The scholarships were established in March 2013 following a donation by The Wren Insurance Association Limited, an architects’ professional indemnity mutual that comprises 60 of the UK’s leading architectural practices.

Find out more about 2017 scholars here.

Image: Roberto Boettger

Date Submitted: 4/9/2017

A group of over 20 graduates of the AA gathered in Hong Kong over the weekend for a reunion and networking event at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in Causeway Bay.

Organised by Claude Wong (AADipl 1984), principal and founding partner of the Gravity Partnership, the event attracted a range of AA alumni from the classes of 1980 to 2013 to share their stories and reminiscences from their time in London, as well as catching up on recently completed projects and works in progress in Hong Kong and beyond.

The next event is scheduled to take place in the autumn in Macau. For more information, or to find out about setting up an alumni group in your city, please contact the Membership & Alumni Office on events@aaschool.ac.uk.

Image: Claude Wong

Date Submitted: 15/8/2017

AA alumnus Ahmad Sukkar (PhD, MRes, London Consortium; MArch AADRL 2006; Dip.Arch, BArch, Damascus University) has been shortlisted for the British Association for Islamic Studies – De Gruyter Prize in the study of Islam and the Muslim world for his doctoral thesis Structures of Light: The Body and Architecture in Premodern Islam.

This international prize is awarded annually to the best doctoral thesis or unpublished first monograph based on any aspect of the academic study of Islam and the Muslim world, past and present. The prize committee deemed Ahmad’s work to be 'of high scholarly quality and interest'.

The London Consortium, where Ahmad completed his PhD studies, was a unique collaboration between the AA, Birkbeck (University of London), the Institute of Contemporary Arts, the Science Museum, and TATE.

His thesis was supervised by Professors Samer Akkach (University of Adelaide), Nader El-Bizri (American University of Beirut), Neil Leach (USC, Harvard GSD) and Mark Cousins (AA). It was examined by Professors Seyyed Hossein Nasr (George Washington University) and Robert Tavernor (LSE).

Ahmad Sukkar is now the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Arts and Humanities at the American University of Beirut.

Read more about the BRAIS prize here and the announcement here. Information about Ahmad’s PhD thesis can be found at oxford.academia.edu/AhmadSukkar/PhD-Thesis.

Date Submitted: 9/8/2017

AA year-out student Luca Gamberini has been announced as the third-prize winner in this year’s RIBAJ Eye Line competition.

The contest, now in its fifth year, celebrates the art of architectural drawing, rather than the project, and encourages architects to draw on their artistic talents, delving into their imaginations to create either realistic or more abstract architectural worlds. This year’s competition attracted nearly 300 entries from architects and designers across the globe.

Luca’s drawings, produced as part of his Intermediate Unit 3 project Generational Land, garnered praise from the judging panel for being “indulgent and gorgeous”, with judge Neil Spiller adding that it was the epic nature of Last Known City (above) that “sealed it for me”.

Professor Spiller, Hawksmoor Chair of Architecture and Landscape, University of Greenwich, was joined on the panel by previous winners Amelia Hunter of Studio Weave, and Sandra Youkhana and Luke Caspar Pearson of You+Pea; RIBAJ editor and former AA Honorary Vice President Hugh Pearman; and Joseph Robson, Managing Director of AVR, the competition’s main partner.

An exhibition showcasing the winning entries will be open at London's Anise Gallery from 12-16 September 2017.

Read more about Luca’s win here.

Image: Luca Gamberini

Date Submitted: 8/8/2017
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