Iain Boal, Ruth Beale & Tim Ivison, chaired by Moad Musbahi

Communes, Commons, Collections

Series: Freefall Lecture Series
Date: Thursday 8 March 2018
Time: 18:30
Venue: AA Lecture Hall
Running time: 104 mins

Freefall is a series organised by AA 4th year Moad Musbahi & AA graduate Konstantina Koulouri. The series looks at the multiplication of ‘lines’ that govern daily life, from the tangible frame around an image or the building of a wall; to the more intangible construction of juridical and disciplinary borders. Freefall in this operates as a way to construct trajectories, in the form of conversations, questioning the ground upon which disciplinary divisions acquire their intelligibility. 

By questioning how disciplinary definitions and exclusions are made, the series hopes that architecture can be re-evaluated in a more relevant fashion to today’s rapidly changing technological and cultural environments.

Iain Boal is a social historian of science, technics, medicine and the commons. Since moving to the US in 1982 he has taught the earth sciences and community studies at Harvard, Stanford, the University of California, and the San Francisco Art Institute. He is associated with Retort, a group of antinomian writers, teachers, artists and artisans based in the Bay Area. With James Brook he co-edited Resisting the Virtual Life: The Culture and Politics of Information (City Lights), and with T.J. Clark, Joseph Matthews and Michael Watts, he co-authored Retort's Afflicted Powers: Capital and Spectacle in a New Age of War (Verso). He is affiliated with the Geography department at UC Berkeley, the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in science and technology, and a founder of MayDay Rooms, the social space and safe haven for archives of dissent located at 88 Fleet Street. He co-edited West of Eden: Communes and Utopia in Northern California (PM Press), and is the author of The Green Machine (forthcoming), a heterodox history of the bicycle in planetary perspective. He is director of the Stokesby Institute of Geohistory and the Material Arts.

Ruth Beale is an artist whose work considers the evocative relationships between culture, governance, social discourse and representation. Her practice includes performance, installations, film and socially-engaged processes. She is co-founder of Performance as Publishing, an active research project into text and writing for performance, and The Alternative School of Economics, which uses the practice of self education to reclaim and explore economics as a social subject. She has performed and exhibited at Whitechapel Gallery, London, ICA, London, Turner Contemporary, Basel Kunsthalle, MoMA Ps1, South London Gallery and Modern Art Oxford. She gained a MFA in Fine Art Practice from Goldsmiths in 2010.

Tim Ivison is an interdisciplinary scholar and artist working on the political ecology of modern cities and urban planning. He teaches in both Liberal Arts and History + Theory at SCI-Arc and in Critical Studies at CalArts. He is a contributor to Real Review (London) and currently the editor of Offramp (SCI-Arc). Recent curatorial projects include T.E.O.T.W.A.W.K.I. and Operations Theater at Before Present, LA. Ivison holds a B.A. in Visual and Critical Studies and a B.F.A. in Studio Practice from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In 2016 he completed a PhD in Humanities and Cultural Studies at the London Consortium, with a thesis on biopolitics and environmental discourse in modern British town planning. From 2014-2016 Ivison was an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Researcher at the Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal.

All lectures are open to members of the public, staff and students unless otherwise stated.

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The Architectural Association receives Taught Degree Awarding Powers by the Lords of Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council.

The Architectural Association (AA), the oldest independent school of architecture in the United Kingdom, is pleased to announce that it has been granted the power to award its own degrees. As of 1 October 2019, the AA has the right to establish new academic programmes and degree awards and is working to create some of the world’s most pioneering courses in architecture to shape and build the future.

Taught Degree Awarding Powers (TDAP) give UK higher education institutions the right to award bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Prospective students worldwide can apply to the AA Foundation Course (Foundation Diploma), Experimental Programme BA(Hons), Diploma Programme (MArch), and nine taught postgraduate programmes encompassing History and Critical Thinking in Architecture (MA), Projective Cities (Taught MPhil) and Sustainable Environmental Design (MSc/MArch), amongst others.

AA Director, Eva Franch said, ‘since our founding in 1847 we have never ceased to create new horizons, institutionally and academically. This is a significant milestone for the AA and demonstrates how we have grown and progressed as an institution that has always valued independence. Receiving TDAP marks a new era for our institution; these are exciting times for the AA. The process has required considerable work from all members of staff and students. I would like to take this opportunity to credit them for this major achievement’.

President of the AA Council, Victoria Thornton added, ‘the TDAP process has recognised our strong governance, academic standards, scholarship and teaching as well as the environment supporting the delivery of taught higher education programmes’.

The School’s application for Taught Degree Awarding Powers was supported by the Architects Registration Board, the Royal Institute of British Architects and The Open University.