SCI-Arc design faculty Elena Manferdini recently completed a permanent public instllation for the entry way of the Hubert H. Humphrey Comprehensive Health Center, a full service facility accommodating families and children in South Los Angeles. The project is part of the Civic Projects promoted by the LA County Art Commission.
Elena Manferdini│Nembi │Hubert H. Humphrey Comprehensive Health Center, Los Angeles
Italian for “clouds,” Nembi (shown here) has been designed with the intent to create a strong relationship with the iconic green color bands of the Health Center's concrete façade. The artwork wraps the concrete wall at the right of the ramp, folds back to occupy the ceiling above it and finally folds onto the front façade, where it connects with the existing green strips on the building elevation. Specific areas of the artwork have been perforated to filter the light coming from the existing light fixtures in the ceiling above the main hospital entry gate.
The figural geometry of the clouds emerges from a series of bi-dimensional drawings produced by the iterative use of a script. This algorithm traces arcs of variable radii linking them together in a continuous composition of variable scales and connections.
The term Nembi has been chosen because the ensemble of lines has the ephemeral qualities of clouds in the sky. This word reflects on the act of “looking up” and hints to the idea that Hubert Humphrey is a place of care and hope. On the other hand the figural geometry of the rainbow stripes emerges from a close reading of the existing building and its iconic stripes that characterize the concrete façade.
Manferdini teaches design studio and visual studies at SCI-Arc, and coordinates the school’s Graduate Thesis process. More at www.ateliermanferdini.com.
Design faculty Florencia Pita and Jackilin Hah Bloom, who have formed the new Los Angeles based collaborative Pita & Bloom, were recently announced as finalists of the MoMA P.S.1 2014 Young Architects Program (YAP).
Now in its 15th edition, the competition challenges emerging architects to design a temporary installation within the walls of the P.S.1 courtyard.
Winners will be announced in early 2014, and if selected, Pita and Bloom will build an installation for MoMA’s annual summer “Warm-Up” series.
The 2014 shortlist includes Collective-LOK (Jon Lott of PARA-Project, William O’Brien Jr. of WOJR, and Michael Kubo of over, under), Fake Industries Architectural Agonism (Cristina Goberna & Urtzi Grau), LAMAS (Wei-Han Vivian Lee & James Macgillivray), and The Living (David Benjamin). YAP is an annual collaboration between The Museum of Modern Art and MoMA PS1 in New York.
Previous YAP winners from SCI-Arc include: alumni Benjamin Ball (B.Arch ‘03) and Gaston Nogues (B.Arch ‘94) of Ball-Nogues with Liquid Sky (2007); SCI-Arc Graduate Programs Chair Hernan Diaz Alonso of Xefirotarch with SUR (2005); and SCI-Arc Applied Studies Coordinator Tom Wiscombe of Tom Wiscombe Design with Light-Wing (2003).
SCI-Arc design faculty Herwig Baumgartner and Scott Uriu of B+U will participate in two exhibitions part of Design Santa Fe 2013, opening November 1st and 2nd in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Baumgartner + Uriu, Animated Apertures Housing Tower, Lima, Peru
B+U’s Animated Apertures (shown here), a housing tower project for the city of Lima, Peru, and the Frank and Kim Canopy were both selected for inclusion in the SITE Gallery show DesignLAB: Next Nest, while their Coral lamp will be on view at the David Richard Gallery-hosted exhibition, Life Support: Art, Design Sustenance.
David Richard Gallery in Santa Fe’s Railyard District will host both the exhibition and Design Santa Fe’s opening ceremony and reception on November 2nd. Included in this show are works from internationally acclaimed artists, craftsmen, designers and architects whose media include furniture, lighting, wall treatments, graphic, interior and textile design, as well as other forms of innovative applications.
The juried design entries on view in DesignLAB at SITE merge artistic visions with 21st century sustainable objects and spaces for living.
Herwig Baumgartner and Scott Uriu co-founded Baumgartner+Uriu (B+U) in 2000. They both teach design studio at SCI-Arc. More at www.bplusu.com.
This week, SCI-Arc design faculty Elena Manferdini will be awarded two coveted recognitions for her contributions to architecture and design, and her efforts to push the architectural profession forward.
The AIA/LA yesterday announced Manferdini as recipient of the institute’s 2013 Educator Award. Presidential honorees this year include Frank Gehry, Johnston Marklee, Michael Govan and Los Angeles City Mayor Eric Garcetti. Awards will be conferred at AIA/LA’s annual gala held on Monday, October 28, at the Broad Stage at Santa Monica College. More about the AIA/LA 2013 awards.
Manferdini’s recent Smeared Projections installation departed from the analysis of examples of “camouflage” techniques derived from repetitive colored textures and their application to volumetric masses at architectural scale.
Manferdini will also receive a 2013 Innovative Research Award from the Association of Computer-Aided Design in Architecture (ACADIA) for her research contributions to digital design in architecture. She will be honored at ACADIA’s 2013 Adaptive Architecture International Conference on Thursday, October 24, alongside other prominent winners such as Brett Steele of the Architectural Association, London, and Greg Lynn of FORM.
Earlier this fall, Manferdini participated in a forum discussion hosted by the Digital Architecture and Design Association (DADA) in Beijing, China. Themed Digital Infiltration, the forum invited renowned designers and architects to discuss new digital directions in architecture and design and their interplay with daily life. Manferdini was joined on stage by speakers including Patrik Schumacher of Zaha Hadid and Xu Weiguo of Tsinghua University School of Architecture in Beijing, China.
Elena Manferdini is principal of Los Angeles-based Atelier Manferdini. She teaches visual studies, design and advanced vertical studios at SCI-Arc, and coordinates the school's Graduate Thesis program.
SCI-Arc design faculty Anna Neimark will participate in a Big City Forum cross disciplinary conversation about the concept and poetics of space with sound and visual artist Steve Roden and dancer and choreographer Flora Wiegmann.
Titled “Shifting Space, Shifting Place,” the discussion takes place tomorrow, Oct 2nd, 7pm at the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena.
Neimark is co-founder of First Office, a design studio that focuses on form through a critical engagement with the conventions of architectural drawing. Recent publications include an article, “The Infrastructural Monument, Soviet Works under Construction and in Representation” in Future Anterior, as well as a series of essays co-authored with Andrew Atwood: “Zoopol, A Monument to the Animal Kingdom” in Project; “How to Domesticate a Mountain,” forthcoming in Perspecta; and “Abstraction Returns” in Think-Space.
Neimark is full-time faculty at SCI-Arc. She received a BA in Architecture from Princeton and an M.Arch from Harvard GSD.
Day shows that the surging demand for both museums and prisons has spurred architects to gamble on new design possibilities and to experiment with their scale and distribution through US cities. He charts cross-pollination between these building types, beginning with an unlikely convergence in Minimalism, and escalating through a wealth of diverse millennial holding spaces.
On Monday, Oct 28, 7pm, SCI-Arc will host a discussion with author Joe Day and Director Eric Owen Moss, addressing Day’s survey of new architectures for the beautiful and the damned. The talk is followed by a book signing reception.
Joe Day is design principal of deegan-day design and teaches at SCI-Arc and Yale School of Architecture. In 2009, he contributed a new foreword to Reyner Banham’s seminal study Los Angeles: Architecture of the Four Ecologies (UC Press). Published by Routledge Press, Corrections and Collections was completed with a grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts.
Corrections & Collections is available on Amazon.
In her recently published book Architecture Follows Nature—Biometric Principles for Innovative Design (CRC Press, 2013), faculty member Ilaria Mazzoleni seeks to instill a shift in thinking about the application of biological principles to design and architecture. In collaboration with biologist Shauna Price, Mazzoleni focuses on the analysis of how organisms have adapted to different environments and translates the learned principles into the built environment.
To illustrate their methodology, the authors draw inspiration from the diversity of animal coverings, referred to broadly as skin, and apply them to the design of building envelopes through a series of twelve case studies. The 264-page book contains more than 500 full-color illustrations and photographs of the resulting architectural designs.
A book signing reception will be hosted on Monday, Oct 21, 7pm in the SCI-Arc Library.
Architecture Follows Nature is available on Amazon.
SCI-Arc design faculty Elena Manferdini participates in the 5th edition of the Gwangju Design Biennale in Korea, Asia’s first and most prestigious contemporary art biennale. A total of 358 designers from 20 countries comprise the five-part exhibition of the ambitious event, whose stated goal is to move away from conceptual aesthetics toward the commercial realm of practical design application.
Elena Manferdini │ Massive Projection │ 2013 Gwangju Design Biennale, Korea
Manferdini’s piece includes a special wall graphic titled “Massive Projection,” which reinterprets the topic of “Still Nature” through contemporary use of digital scanning techniques and scripting algorithms. The images, though flat, are able to produce an intense three dimensionality due to the hyper-realism of the vivid digital production constituting a contemporary "Still Nature." Its overall composition is obtained by the compilation of a set of simple geometrical volumes, combined on a three-dimensional grid. These volumes, with different natural paintings, are "presences" rather than "sculptures," creating a large event space through the simplicity of their compilation and their large scale.
Themed “Gusigi, Masigi” (“Anything, Something”), the biennale features, among other exhibitions, a group show presenting works by international designers such as Los Angeles based Elena Manferdini, British designer Tom Price, Choi Byung Hoon of Korea and more. The exhibition graphic addresses issues of virtual perception, framing nature and human composition into an architectural space and conceiving the representation of sites with a sense of dislocation
More about the Gwangju Design Biennale.
More about Elena Manferdini/Atelier Manferdini.
SCI-Arc design faculty Peter Zellner participated in the Big City Forum panel discussion “Architecture/Complexity/Generosity” at the Armory Center for the Arts in Pasadena last week. Led by Will Wright of the AIA Los Angeles, the panel also featured Theresa Hwang, a community-driven designer working with the Skid Row Housing Trust, and Michael Maltzan, FAIA principal and founder of Michael Maltzan Architecture.
The Big City Forum is an interdisciplinary project that promotes the arts, design, architecture, and urbanism as powerful tools for community and civic transformation. It aims to build a platform for collaboration and partnership that brings together the creative community around a shared sense of cultural vitality and transformation.
SCI-Arc design faculty members Eric Kahn and Russell Thomsen, founders of IDEA Office, are among the 2013 recipients of a grant from the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, to support their ongoing project, Thinking the Future of Auschwitz. The project will be exhibited at SCI-Arc in the fall of 2014, accompanied by a public discussion with Director Eric Owen Moss.
Thinking of the Future of Auschwitz | IDEA Office | www.ideaoffice.net
Thinking the Future of Auschwitz (shown here) is an architectural proposal for the future of the Nazi concentration camp in Poland. While the original concentration camp and Polish State Museum at Auschwitz maintain their status as a narrated, didactic experience, this proposal transforms the extermination camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau into a Tel Olam.
Originally cited in Deuteronomy, a Tel Olam marks a place of unspeakable evil, blotting out and rendering a place inaccessible. Translated as a perpetual heap—in contemporary terms, a machinic field—it produces an indeterminate traumatic figure, steadfastly delimiting a perimeter. Proper to its unutterable status, Birkenau becomes perpetually indeterminate, generating a probing, hermeneutic experience without immediate answers, withholding solace and defying (convenient) philosophical closure.
While the project is unique to Auschwitz, it tests architecture's own particular agency in the twenty-first century and contributes significantly to an expanded discourse on the conventions of catastrophe.
Eric A. Kahn and Russell N. Thomsen are licensed architects and partners in IDEA Office. In addition to teaching at SCI-Arc, they have held chairs at the University of Michigan, the University of California at Berkeley, and the University of Arkansas, as well as visiting professor positions at the Royal Danish Academy of Art in Copenhagen. The work of IDEA has been recognized and published internationally and is part of the permanent collection of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, as well as private collections. The partners are recipients of the Young Architects Award and the Emerging Voices Award, both sponsored by the Architectural League of New York.