See all lectures (archive)

Fall 2017

Lectures are free and open to the public. For some lectures, members of the MIT community with IDs will be admitted 30 minutes prior to the lecture and the general public will be admitted as space permits.

Except as noted, lectures are at 6:00 pm in Room 7-429, located at 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA.  An interactive map may be found on-line at: http://whereis.mit.edu/map-jpg

Nov 3, 2017 - 5:30pm

Mapping technologies occupy a curious status in society. Profoundly, they are objects of publicity that translate the real world and our being within it. At the same time, they are objective, the products of technicians, expertise, science. This lecture addresses one such recent development in mapping -- geodesign -- to better understand its origins and operative regime, in three parts. First, I develop the notion that maps proceed as retentional techniques, drawing out recent critiques of the ordering of human life around an attention economy.

Sep 11, 2017 - 12:30pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Energy simulation may be a key to unlocking the energy conservation potential of new and existing buildings.  However, a number of barriers hinder the efficacy of this tool.  This talk highlights research aimed at chipping away these barriers.  Solutions range from improving its integration into an early design workflow to unearthing and improving sources of model inaccuracy, such as occupant behavior and urban context.

Sep 11, 2017 - 7:00pm
ACT Cube, E15-001

Trevor Paglen is an artist whose work spans image-making, sculpture, investigative journalism, writing, engineering, and numerous other disciplines. Among his chief concerns are learning how to see the historical moment we live in and developing the means to imagine alternative futures.

Sep 12, 2017 - 12:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Architecture & Urban Studies & Planning Faculty Roundtable
Garnette Cadogan, Dayna Cunningham, Yolande Daniels, Mark Jarzombek, Justin Steil
Room 7-429/Long Lounge, 12 PM 

Sep 15, 2017 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Mapping for machines, by machines is big business. Yet mapping’s artificial intelligences also have the potential to transform myriad design and research areas, to influence policy-making and governance, to support environmental preservation and public health – and, in the process, to pose critical questions about how our cartographic technologies conceptualize and operationalize space.

Sep 20, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

MIT Department of Architecture / Fall 2017 Lecture Series
Dinner with the In-Laws: Traumatic Memorial

Sep 21, 2017 - 12:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

September 21, 12 PM - 1 PM: Panel Discussion with Marie Law Adams, Lorena Bello, Andrew Brose, Anton Garcia-Abril, Adèle Naudé Santos, and Rafi Segal; Moderated by James Wescoat | Room 7-429/Long Lounge

September 22, 12 PM - 2 PM: Workshop presentations by students and faculty | Room 9-255/DUSP City Arena

Sep 25, 2017 - 6:00pm
ACT Cube/E15-001

Following Cristina Ricupero’s special interest in the mechanisms of contemporary secrecy, she will focus this two-part program on espionage, a topic she has been currently developing for an exhibition project with Alexandra Midal (independent curator and professor at the design program at HEAD-Haute Ecole d’Art et Design Geneva). 

Sep 25, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 3-133

As a Lebanese-born American woman and mother, Matar has dedicated her artistic practice to exploring both sides of her cultural background, cross-cultural experience, and personal narrative, in addressing issues of personal and collective identity, through photographing girls and women both in the United States where she lives and in the Middle East where she is from. Focusing on both cultures is especially important to her in the current political climate we live in, where the  ‘them vs. us’ rhetoric is so prevalent.

Sep 26, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Paul Goldberger, who the Huffington Post has called “the leading figure in architecture criticism,” is now a Contributing Editor at Vanity Fair. From 1997 through 2011 he served as the Architecture Critic for The New Yorker, where he wrote the magazine’s celebrated “Sky Line” column. He also holds the Joseph Urban Chair in Design and Architecture at The New School in New York City. He was formerly Dean of the Parsons School of Design, a division of The New School.

Oct 3, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

This interdisciplinary lecture will address a proposed shift to make multi-stall bathrooms on campus accessible to people of all genders, ages, sizes, and abilities. Professor and architect Joel Sanders, will situate this issue in a cultural/historical context, charting the evolution of his thinking about the bathroom as an overdetermined space that registers deep seated cultural conceptions about gender, abjection and embodied difference. Then he will present design prototypes for inclusive restrooms.

Oct 4, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Faculty: Ana Miljacki, Nasser Rabbat, Larry Sass

Oct 5, 2017 - 6:00pm
Lecture Hall 10-250

Join the MIT Center for Art, Science & Technology (CAST) for a preview of new faculty work in development through Mellon Foundation grants:

Oct 11, 2017 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

What is a petroculture? Conjectures on energy and global culture with Professor Imre Szeman, University of Alberta and University of Waterloo, Canada

Followed by a panel discussion with Rania Ghosn, Assistant Professor of Architecture and Urbanism, MIT School of Architecture + Planning; Caroline A. Jones, Professor of Art History, MIT School of Architecture + Planning; and Rosalind Williams, Bern Dibner Professor of the History of Science and Technology, MIT Program on Science, Technology, and Society

Oct 14, 2017 - 10:00am
75 Amherst St, E14-633 / Media Lab Lecture Hall, 6th Floor

MIT History, Theory, and Criticism of Architecture and Art Graduate Student Conference
75 Amherst St.
E-14 633, Media Lab Lecture Hall, 6th Floor
October 14, 2017
10 AM - 7 PM

Oct 16, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 3-133

Raya is an award winning Architect and urban designer with 25 years of professional experience having worked in Baghdad, Germany, Boston, New York and Dubai.

Oct 17, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Cole Roskam has been an associate professor of architectural history and theory in the Department of Architecture at the University of Hong Kong since 2010.  His research and teaching include topics in 20th century and contemporary architectural and urban history as well as theory. He is particularly interested in understanding architecture’s role in mediating moments of transnational interaction and exchange between China and other parts of the world.

Oct 19, 2017 - 6:00pm
7-429, Long Lounge

In order to get to a carbon neutral building stock – which is e.g. required by the EU Carbon roadmap by 2050  – our efforts need to be smart and holistic on all scales of design. At the same time it is essential that a transformation process provide great environmental qualities – indoor as well as outdoor (public realm). This requires mitigation and adaptation strategies, which can only be accomplished by transforming the design process: “Form Follows Process” (Chris Bangle, chief of design at BMW between 1992 and 2009).

Oct 20, 2017 - 2:00pm
ACT Cube/E15-001

David Reinfurt will report on the last six months in Rome as a fellow at the American Academy interrogating one small, industrially produced artwork-product from 1965. The Tetracono was designed by Bruno Munari and produced by Danese Milano as an austere 15-cm black steel cube housing four aluminum cones, each painted half-red and half-green, which spin at four distinct speeds on an 18-minute cycle. Its function is to “show forms while they are in the process of becoming.”

Oct 20, 2017 - 5:30pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Boris Groys (b.1947) is a philosopher, essayist, art critic, media theorist and an internationally renowned expert on Soviet-era art and literature, specifically, the Russian avant-garde. He is a Global Distinguished Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at New York University, a Senior Research Fellow at the Staatliche Hochschule für Gestaltung Karlsruhe, and a professor of philosophy at The European Graduate School / EGS.

Oct 24, 2017 - 6:00pm
32-141; Stata Center

The threat: Like an oncoming storm front, the Force Majeure is a fluid frontier; a frontier of heat moving across the planet; a frontier of water advancing on lands.  It is a frontier from which we retreat, yet within which we must also adapt. The opportunity: Our motto is, Think Globally, Act Globally. We must adapt to the Force Majeure at the scale in which it occurs.  We believe that Art and Science working together can provide key insights and solutions. This can be done – if we re-imagine what’s possible. 

Oct 26, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

At the intersection of art, engineering and architecture “Light in the Public Realm” will explore James Carpenter’s focus upon the phenomenological qualities of light as a central organizing principle of the public realm. Using infrastructural, cultural and civic projects, James Carpenter will outline some of his firms’ innovative strategies that merge program, performance, structure and light to reveal the unique characteristics of a place and to embody a deeper collective experience of nature.

Oct 27, 2017 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

We live in a world where much of what we know about things is affected by the manner in which those things are represented in digital form.  In fact, our interaction with that world itself in increasingly influenced by the manner in which it is seen through through the eyes of geospatial technology.

Nov 2, 2017 - 8:00pm
Lecture Hall 10-250

This lecture is presented in parallel with the 2017 ACADIA Conference, Disciplines and Disruptions.

British designer Thomas Heatherwick founded Heatherwick Studio in 1994 to bring craft, design, architecture and urban planning together in a single workspace. Today a team of 200, including architects, designers and makers, work from a combined studio and workshop in King’s Cross, London.

Nov 6, 2017 - 5:30pm
MIT Press Bookstore

Thresholds is the annual peer-reviewed journal produced by the MIT Department of Architecture, held in over 150 university art & architecture libraries around the world. Thresholds 45: Myth is edited by Zachary Angles (MIT Architecture, MArch ’19). Venturing into the proposition that architecture is as much constituted of stone, wood, and steel as the myths that propel it into existence, Thresholds 45: Myth explores how architecture makes myth and how myth makes architecture.

Nov 7, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Beatriz Colomina is Professor of History and Theory in the School of Architecture and founding director of the program in Media and Modernity at Princeton University. She has written extensively on questions of architecture, art, sexuality and media. Her books include Are We Human?

Nov 9, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Alison Brooks, Principal and Creative Director of Alison Brooks Architects, is recognised as one of the leading architects of her generation. She has developed an international reputation for design excellence, as well as a voice advocating for the social project of architecture, and the role of women in the profession. Born in Ontario, Canada in 1962, she moved to London in 1988 after graduating with a BES and BArch from the University of Waterloo.

Nov 13, 2017 - 12:30pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Franca Trubiano is Associate Professor in the Architecture Department at PENN Design and a Registered Architect with l'Ordre des Architectes du Quebec. She teaches in theories of building, environmental design, construction technology, emerging materials, integrated design, and high-performance buildings.

Nov 13, 2017 - 6:00pm
ACT Cube/E15-001

Postcommodity will discuss their 2015 land art installation and socially engaged artwork Repellent Fence, and the implications of this work on their art practice, their future work, and the field of contemporary art as we approach the year 2043 (when the US transitions to a non-white majority).

Nov 13, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

MIT Department of Architecture / Fall 2017 Lecture Series
Dinner with the In-Laws: Terms of Work

Faculty: Mariana Ibanez, Sheila Kennedy, Rami El Samahy
Moderated by Timothy Hyde

This lecture is organized by the Architecture Student Council (ASC).

Nov 14, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Frederic Leighton’s Holland Park home was one of the most famous British Orientalist interiors in nineteenth-century London. His home, the site of his creative practice, it was also an evolving work of art and a space into and out of which objects, art works and people travelled. Here Leighton amassed an exceptional collection of Islamic art. The quality of the historic Near Eastern tiles and the artistic ambitions of their installation in Leighton’s Arab Hall, built between 1877 and 1879, distinguishes his Orientalist interior from the homes of his peers.

Nov 16, 2017 - 6:00pm
Lecture Hall 10-250

Five years ago, Christian Kerez taught a studio at the Harvard Graduate School of Design titled ‘Ornamental Space’. The studio served as a starting point to verify if an abstract term could trigger the design process. The concepts developed in the studio contributed to a competition entry for a cultural center in Beijing the following year.

Nov 17, 2017 - 12:00pm
Room 7-429 / Long Lounge
Nov 17, 2017 - 5:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

In discourses about design, computation often operates ambivalently both as a reference to concrete technologies, and as an epistemic template for generative, descriptive, or analytical aspirations. Tracing early disclosures of this productive ambivalence, this talk will reflect on two artifacts from the history of Computer-Aided Design. The first is the “Plex,” a theoretical construct developed by mathematician Douglas Ross in the mid 1950s, which helped steer early CAD research and foreshadowed object orientation.

Nov 20, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

One of the many reasons that women and minorities face such challenges in succeeding as architects in the United States and many other places is the ways in which we construct the canon of buildings that matter to exclude many past successes and thus to diminish their impact upon our awareness of what such architects have and can achieve.  How is the success of a building defined?  How is innovation identified?  How are commercial factors credited?  And how is collaboration identified?  These are not new questions; feminists and other activists have been asking them now for nearly half a ce

Nov 30, 2017 - 6:00pm
Lecture Hall 10-250

Leslie E. Robertson and SawTeen See, a husband and wife team of 35 years, will share some of the highlights of their collaborations with architects in the design of museums, pedestrian bridges, convention centers, and some of the world’s tallest buildings. 

Dec 4, 2017 - 6:00pm
ACT Cube/E15-001

Judith Barry utilizes a research-based methodology to explore a wide range of topics. Both the form and the content of her work evolve as the research proceeds. She often makes use of installation, in various forms and including exhibition design, as a way to combine many of her disparate interests.  These immersive environments are based on experiments incorporating architecture, sculpture, performance, theatre, film/video/new media, graphics, and interactivity. 

Dec 4, 2017 - 6:00pm
Room 7-429/Long Lounge

Sabiha will speak about her unusual and wondrous journey with Islamic art which has connected far away times and places in her life. As a Tunisian who discovered and studied Islamic art in London, Sabiha came to learn more about her own culture from outside it. Feeling at home in both East and West, she celebrates the commonalties as well as the differences between cultures. Islamic art’s particularities and idiosyncrasies have much to offer in fostering understanding and bridging cultural gaps.

Jul 16, 2018 - 9:00am
Kresge Auditorium

In July 2018, the annual Symposium of the IASS – International Association for Shell and Spatial Structures – will take place in Boston, an American hub of academics and innovation. Hosted at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the symposium aims to bring together leading designers and researchers working in the fields of structural engineering and architecture from around the world.