Agnes Parker awarded summer traveling fellowship

Agnes Parker, a second-year graduate student in the MArch program, has been awarded the KPF Traveling Fellowship by KPF, an international architecture firm. The award is presented annually to three students who are in their penultimate year at one of the 27 design schools with which the firm has chosen to partner. The goal of the award is to allow students to broaden their education through a summer of travel-based architectural research before completing their final year at school.

Parker plans to drive across the United States this summer to document the diverse materials found in different states and regions.

“With modern construction often ignoring or purposefully obscuring material provenance, this trip aims to capture and catalog the hyper-local materials and fabrication techniques that reflect the distinct cultural and environmental identities of each state,” says Parker. “By cataloguing this forgotten material library, I hope to investigate an alternative material perspective for future American architecture and design — one that focuses on regenerative materials, local manufacturing and circular principles.”

Recipients are awarded cash prizes to fund summer research on topics that push the boundaries of critical thinking and architectural design.

Parker is a designer and researcher with a background in architecture, material research and design journalism. She graduated from the Bartlett School of Architecture with first class honors. Before coming to MIT she received the British Council Venice Fellowship and the SOS design residency hosted by the Design Museum London and the Institute of Contemporary Art in London. She is currently a research assistant in the Self Assembly Lab in the MIT Department of Architecture focusing on active textiles. 

Story originally published May 23, 2024 by Maria Iacobo for the School of Architecture and Planning.