Archinect - Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Lizzie) 2020-11-28T01:58:14-05:00 Spring Break: Quito! lizziey 2014-03-30T16:55:00-04:00 >2014-03-31T22:35:46-04:00 <p>This week was MIT&rsquo;s spring break.&nbsp;For myself and the rest of my classmates in the Media Lab&rsquo;s &ldquo;Quito Innovation Hubs&rdquo; course, however, there would be no catching up on House of Cards or sleeping until noon. Rather, we spent the week exploring the surprisingly lovely city of Quito, Ecuador (latitude 0.00).</p><p>We spent the week running around on mountainsides, church rooftops, and spanish-colonial plazas galore. Features included dinner with the archbishop, shopping for assorted alpaca wool home goods, a gondola ride up the mountain, collaborating with a class at Quito&rsquo;s Catholic University, and more amazing ceviche than I&rsquo;ve ever consumed in my life.</p><p>Now, to catch up on all the work I didn&rsquo;t have time to do!</p><p><img title="" alt="" src=""><img title="" alt="" src=""><img title="" alt="" src=""><img title="" alt="" src=""><img title="" alt="" src=""></p><p>---</p><p>See<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> more photos from our Quito trip</a>, and posts from other MIT Architecture students, at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> Copters over New Jersey lizziey 2014-03-16T10:24:52-04:00 >2014-03-16T15:09:04-04:00 <p>Last weekend, my studio went on a site visit the New Jersey Meadowlands. Our project is an urban design/landscape project that mediates between the development pressures of this site (just 20 minutes from New York) and its environmental factors. At 31+ square miles, the meadowlands is one of the biggest estuarine marsh systems in the region, but it is also polluted to toxic levels due to high levels of industry, logistics infrastructure, and dumping. To add to that, nearly the entire site is in the FEMA 500 year flood risk area, and the area was inundated during Hurricane Sandy.</p><p>To help wrap our heads around the scale of the site (and get some sexy photos in the meantime) our professors took a few of us up for a 30 minutes helicopter ride over the site. Get an eyeful of landfills, phragmites, shipping containers, and the NYC skyline below!</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img alt="DSC_0725" src=""></a>&nbsp;<img title="" alt="" src=""><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img alt="DSC_0760" src=""></a><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img alt="DSC_0586" src=""></a></p><p>&nbsp;</p><p>--</p><p>See<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> more of my photos from the helicopter</a>, and posts from other MIT architecture students, over at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> Architecture and Equality? lizziey 2014-03-02T11:06:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p>So, I don&rsquo;t particularly consider myself a feminist. And I don&rsquo;t mean to get all provocative up in here. But I do believe in equality, and it doesn&rsquo;t take long in the discipline of architecture to figure out that there&rsquo;s some kind of problem going on. Go to any review, and you&rsquo;re most likely to see a group of old white men sitting around and judging a studio that&rsquo;s at least half female, if not more. The problem extends into practice too-&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">only 17% of AIA members are women, and just 10% are ethnic minorities.&nbsp;</a></p><p>It seems I&rsquo;m not the only designer with these issues on my mind. Last year a group from the GSD launched an ultimately u<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">nsuccessful petition to recognize Denise Scott Brown&nbsp;</a>with her partner Robert Venturi&rsquo;s Pritzker Prize.</p><p>The thing is, its a complex problem, and I&rsquo;m not sure if there&rsquo;s anyone to blame. But I do think its useful take a look at that reading list, jury panel, or conference poster and ask who is being represented and why. Apparently, so did the folks over at&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Feminist...</a></p> UNDERWATER: Facts from an Aquatic Semester lizziey 2014-02-23T17:30:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p>So, this is my first semester of freedom at MIT. That is, the first semester where I was in charge of choosing all of my classes- no core studios, no required classes on how to make a grasshopper script, no droning lectures on planning theory. So I should be having a lot of fun, right? But the curse of picking only classes that you like, is that you want to work on all of them, all of the time.</p><p>The process of creating your own curriculum is also self-revealing. Somehow, 3 of my classes are taught by landscape architects. And 3.5 of them are about water.</p><p>So, as I try to keep my head above water (ha!) I&rsquo;ll share a few aquatic facts that I&rsquo;ve found especially exciting these last few weeks. So, dive in!</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img alt="" src=";h=330"></a></p><p></p><p>1. Those cables that&nbsp;<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">bring internet under the ocean&nbsp;</a>are only 2.7 inches wide. And most of them arrive at one building in London (the Telehouse).</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p><a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"><img alt="Map of sea surface level (Wikimedia Commons)" src=";h=418"></a></p><p>Map of sea surface level (Wikimedia Commons)</p><p>2. The surface of the ocean isn&rsquo;t even- but since it&rsquo;s a useful index, it has a ...</p> GETTING OUTSIDE: Boston's Museum of Fine Arts lizziey 2014-02-16T08:17:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p>As we circulate between buildings 7, 9, and 10, with the occasional trip to the grocery store or the GSD, its easy to forget that we live in a globally significant city. So, as an attempt to expand my bubble before the semester hits me hard, I trekked across the river this weekend to see what was new at the MFA (that is, the Museum of Fine Arts, in case you've really been hiding under your desk).</p><p>The MFA is really a world-class museum, with one of the largest collections in the world, at 450,000 pieces. And if you want a dose of architecture, Foster + Partner's new Art of the America's wing is fantastic- I recommend creeping around the hallways on the northeastern edge- these semi-hidden spaces have great views of Boston, and are a great respite from the Saturday crowds. We checked out a few of the temporary exhibitions that are always rotating through- enjoy some of my old and new favorites below!</p><p>(If you're a local student, your MIT or GSD ID gets you in to the MFA and its sister mu...</p> TALLINN: City of the Future? lizziey 2014-02-10T15:42:00-05:00 >2014-02-17T23:24:28-05:00 <p>When I visited Tallinn a few summers ago, as part of a two-week adventure with my dad through the Baltic states, I wasn&rsquo;t sure what to expect. On the one hand, Tallinn&rsquo;s historic center is a UNESCO world heritage site, and the area has been settled since 5000 BC. On the other hand, the city only gained its independence&nbsp;from the USSR in 1991. What we discovered was a post-soviet&nbsp;Medieval&nbsp;city with an entirely progressive edge.</p><p>Estonia, Lithuania, and Latvia have been referred to as the &ldquo;Baltic Tigers,&rdquo; given their rapid growth since independence, and in establishing itself so rapidly Talinn and the rest of Estonia has bounded over some of the more embedded governmental parameters (or inefficiencies?) of its Western European counterparts. For example, with its need to be lightweight and&nbsp;maneuverable, they have an &ldquo;e-government&rdquo; with online voting and free public transportation with residents&rsquo; digital IDs. Internet and technology are they country&rsquo;s major exports; Skype was founded in Ta...</p> Lectures and Symposia and Events, Oh My! lizziey 2014-02-02T08:33:25-05:00 >2014-02-03T21:36:03-05:00 <p><img title="" alt="" src="">Mark your calendars!</p><p>In case you missed it, HQ just released our list of upcoming lectures, symposia, and events for the spring semester. I have to say, they&rsquo;ve really outdone themselves this semester! Not only do we have some flashy names on the calender (i.e.&nbsp;<strong>Sylvia Lavin</strong>&nbsp;(04-03),<strong>&nbsp;Shigeru Ban</strong>&nbsp;(02-27),<strong>&nbsp;Thom Mayne</strong>&nbsp;(04-07),<strong>&nbsp;</strong>and&nbsp;<strong>Sarah Whiting&nbsp;</strong>(04-17) but the rest of the lineup has a great combination of interesting conversations, established designers and thinkers, and exciting newcomers. We&rsquo;ve got a great lineup of Symposia too- ACT (03-06 to 03-07), AKPIA (04-10 to 04-11), and CAU (04-11 to 04-12).</p><p>I&rsquo;m especially excited for the Architectural Design<strong>&nbsp;&ldquo;Dinner with the In-Laws&rdquo;</strong>&nbsp;series, &ldquo;an internal debate series among family on the disciplinary topics that shape the practice and research of our school.&rdquo; It&rsquo;s always great to get a little more insight into the inner workings of our own MIT community. And I bet the debate between colleagues will really keep our faculty on their toes- for ex...</p> India Part 2: Zooming in lizziey 2014-01-23T13:25:48-05:00 >2014-01-27T22:59:03-05:00 <p>Our &ldquo;Gujarat Waterscapes Workshop&rdquo; started not in Gujarat state at all, but in Mumbai. Our first week began with meetings at AKPBSI, our partner organization, and familiarization with what I&rsquo;ve decided will be one of my new favorite cities. Mumbai fits all of my criteria: colors, vibrancy, great food, local identity and global diversity.</p><p>After a short time in Mumbai we zoomed in- or, scaled down- flying to the city of Jamnagar in Gujarat. At a population of 200,000, a tiny fraction of Mumbai or even Chennai, I was worried that the small town would be dull in comparison. Our group was thrilled to discover quite the opposite &ndash; as the capital of a former princely state, Jamnagar has a rich collection of historic architecture that&rsquo;s matched by the cheerful chaos of its markets and street life. Since our student group happened to be all-female (that is, excluding our professor), we were also pleased to discover that the area&rsquo;s famed bandhani scarves could be bought for a dollar or two eac...</p> India Part 1: Chennai and Mahabilipuram lizziey 2014-01-09T12:26:33-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p> For the next couple of weeks, I&rsquo;ll be sharing my adventures as I travel around Mumbai and Gujarat with a group of MIT Architecture and Planning students, as part of a workshop called &ldquo;Gujarat Community Waterscapes&rdquo;. Before getting my learning on though, I&rsquo;ve spent the last couple of days with my sister in Chennai (which is a large coastal city in the south east of the country). She is living there while working on a<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> really cool startup.</a></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> My second day there we visited the village of Mahabilipuram, 60km south of the city, which is famous for its rock sculptures and temples. Because of the plethora of early stone carvings there, historians think the area may have been a training ground for apprentice sculptors. Enjoy the eye (rock) candy below!</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""><img alt="" src="" title=""><img alt="" src="" title=""><img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> --</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> See <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">more images from Mahabilipuram</a>, and posts from other MIT Architecture students at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk (</a></p> Snow art lizziey 2013-12-23T09:58:44-05:00 >2013-12-23T22:15:35-05:00 <p> Where I&rsquo;m from, its winter more than its any other season. So naturally, we make the most of it: winter festivals, celebrations of the Finnish god of winter Heikki Lunta, and one of the largest ice sculpture competitions in the world. One of my favorite part about these ice sculptures is their temporality- the idea that you would put so much effort into something that might not last the week. As I head back to the rural north for the holidays through snow, ice, and sleet, I thought about how else frozen art might be created.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <br><br><p> <strong>Trampled snow art: Simon Beck</strong></p> <p> English artist <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Beck </a>uses snowshoes to track these centrifugal designs into the French Alps. In order to stay on track, he draws up the designs digitally, using these to create accurate maps as a guide.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <strong>Ice Architecture:<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> Hotel de Glace</a></strong></p> <p> Every year, this hotel is constructed in Quebec, CA.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""><img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <strong>Storm Glass</strong></p> <p> This is actually a project that I worked on at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">PLY architecture </a>in Ann Arbor. Storm gl...</p> Core III Final Review! lizziey 2013-12-15T16:31:54-05:00 >2013-12-16T22:07:41-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title="">As you may have guessed by the petering out of posts over &nbsp;at<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> Arch Kiosk,</a> this was final review week at MIT. My studio was no exception; this week we finished the third of three Core studios in our sequence. Our day featured fishy-themed snacks related to our <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">fish pier adaptation proposa</a>l, multi-media presentations (with four simultaneous projectors!), and giant models galore!</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> At MIT, we have three fundamental Core studios, followed by three Option studios where we get to ballot for professors and topics. And after that, thesis! So, for my class that means we are finally free from the binds of Core, and are eagerly awaiting balloting for our fancy option studios in the spring. Onward ho!</p> <p> --</p> <p> See<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> more pictures from our final review </a>and posts from other MIT Architecture students at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> Midwestern Modern: My grandmother's house lizziey 2013-12-01T10:41:56-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title="">In honor of the holidays, I thought I&rsquo;d share a more personal architectural experience as I spend the weekend avoiding studio with home-cooking, board games, and family. Built after her recovery from polio over 60 years ago, my grandma&rsquo;s house was designed in the tradition of Alden B. Dow, a pupil of Frank Lloyd Wright. Given the ticky-tacky houses constructed for Dow Chemical workers that fill the rest of the quiet town of Midland Michigan, the modern house is quite a contrast. While its low profile turns itself away from the street, the interior is truly mid-century modern (with a local twist); soaring ceilings, built in furniture, and an open plan...</p> <p> -</p> <p> Read the<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> rest of this post</a>, and more from MIT Architecture students, over at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> de Uithof, NL: OMA'S MASTERPLAN lizziey 2013-11-24T10:03:41-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title="">Just one mile outside of Utrecht, NL's historic (and highly adorable) city center, housing Utrecht University's science and medical campu, de Uithof contains maybe the highest density of contemporary (st)architecture that I have ever observed. OMA, Weil Arets, and Mecanoo, just to name a few. And while I expected to be blown away by the campus when I biked there from my sublet in Utrecht city center, my feelings were more ambivalent upon my arrival. Yes, the area was chock-ful lof architectural gems, but they just sat there, oversized and lifeless, on more or less the flat grassy sheep fields that had been there for centuries. So while I was thrilled to experience the Educatorium and the Minneart building first hand, my overall experience in de Uithof was a sense of scalar isolation and removal from a sense of time (in spite of being the site of a historic fortification). This feeling was amplified by the sharp contrast provided by Utrecht's medieval city center, all cobbled roads...</p> GET MORE DEGREES! On getting a dual degree in architecture and planning at MIT lizziey 2013-11-17T10:37:45-05:00 >2013-11-18T19:01:28-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <em>My split identity: Jane Jacobs + le Corbusier</em></p> <p> So, lately it seems that people from both my architecture and planning lives are interested in what's happening on the other side. Given the many questions I've received lately on my foray into simultaneous dual degree land, I thought it might be useful to do a little Q &amp; A with myself (which I hope is not too&nbsp;presumptuous)...</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> <strong>Why get an M.Arch and MCP?</strong></p> <p> I always suspected I didn't want to be an architect in the traditional sense, and my work experience confirmed that. Yet here I am in architecture school, and while I don't want to be a city planner either, I realized that maybe expanding into the planning realm could get me a little closer to what I might want to do in the future. I'm not sure exactly what that is, but it somehow exists in the space between architecture and planning; thinking and working at multiple scales, designing systems that respond to broad problems and issues, and trying to understand how something ...</p> CITIES ON THE MOVE: From Archigram to Cruise Ships lizziey 2013-11-10T10:29:20-05:00 >2018-07-04T02:31:03-04:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> Recently, this<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> roaming city project by Spanish thesis student Manuel Dom&iacute;nguez </a>featured on <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">ArchDaily</a> got me thinking about the trajectory of relocatable cities throughout recent history.<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> Archigram&rsquo;s Walking City</a> is an obvious parallel, but what is interesting about Dom&iacute;nguez&rsquo;s project is that it isn&rsquo;t necessarily purely conceptual; his calculations ostensibly demonstrate that the project is structurally feasible (which Herron&rsquo;s certainly is not).<img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> But I also thought, is the idea of a roving city really that radical? What of cruise ships, that house thousands of people and many of&nbsp; the necessary accouterments for a more-or-less urban life; movie theaters, swimming pools, shopping malls and theaters? Navy vessels function similarly as a floating city, with a more efficient approach...</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title="">--</p> <p> Read the <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">rest of this post</a>, and posts from other MIT Architecture students, over at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> ARCHITECTS MAKING WEIRD STUFF: CODEX SERAPHINIANUS lizziey 2013-11-04T12:26:00-05:00 >2018-01-30T06:16:04-05:00 <p> Luigi Serafini really took on the idea that architects can be whatever they want with his 1981 completion of the Codex Seraphinianus; a two volume, 254 page tome describing an alternate reality through an invented alphabet and surreal illustrations. The book is divided into eleven sections forming an encyclopedia of Serafini's imagined world; flora, fauna, bipeds, chemistry/physics, machines,biology, history, writing systems, culture, games/sports, and architecture.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> An original edition will run you over $500 on Amazon, but right now you can get a new edition for just $150.. but you can also find <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">PDFs online</a> if you don't mind getting your Codex fix digitally.</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> --</p> <p> See <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">more of this post</a> and content from other MIT Architecture students over at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch Kiosk</a></p> GET READY! MIT Architecture Fall Open House this Thursday, Oct 31st lizziey 2013-10-27T10:04:07-04:00 >2013-11-04T18:12:01-05:00 <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Open house is an exciting time; new faces, fresh ideas, and a chance to re-evaluate who we are and what we&rsquo;re doing at MIT Architecture. The Spring Open House was a deciding factor in my decision to attend MIT- I resonated with people here and the ideas they were sharing.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> So, in my ever-dorky eagerness, I&rsquo;m excited to share what makes MIT Architecture special with a new batch of prospective students. If you&rsquo;re a prospective MIT-er out there, here&rsquo;s a few things you can expect at the<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> Open House this Thursday</a> (Halloween!)....</p> <p> --</p> <p> Visit <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch_Kiosk </a>to read<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> the rest of this post,</a> and entries from other MIT Architecture students!</p> INTERVIEW: Section Cut lizziey 2013-10-20T11:03:07-04:00 >2013-10-20T11:04:02-04:00 <p> This week, I&rsquo;m interviewing my friends over at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Section Cut</a>, an online design resource curated by young professionals. Listen in!</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <strong>Q: What is Section Cut?</strong></p> <p> There are a few dimensions of S|C but, primarily, we&rsquo;re a collection of highly curated design resources that design students and professionals can trust, organized by categories and filters.</p> <p> Our mission is to provide the best resources out there &ndash; which we achieve by asking only vetted, knowledgeable individuals for their top picks and what makes each so great. Our growing community keeps pushing the collection to new heights while maintaining the integrity of our standards.</p> <p> <img alt="" src="" title=""></p> <p> <strong>Q: How did you come up with the idea?</strong></p> <p> We began the project after noticing the lack of a database of resources with a filter refined for designers. Robert took on the initial ideation and coding himself, but quickly realized an opportunity to leverage the expertise within his network of friends and colleagues. The need to vet multiple design dec...</p> FICTION: Pidgin 16 lizziey 2013-10-13T09:36:16-04:00 >2013-10-21T18:21:19-04:00 <p> Unfortunately, a massive sellout of all bus tickets to NYC precluded my attendance, but <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Pidgin</a> launched its 16th issue last night! (If you haven't been lucky to have had your hands on one yet, Pidgin is the publication edited and designed by graduate students at the Princeton University School of Architecture.) Much as I like to promote fellow archi-student publications, I have a little bit of a stake in the issue: an article! &ldquo;Networked Reality and Institutional Gossip&rdquo; is an essay by myself and Zheela Qaiser based on a research project we did with Elizabeth Galvez in Ana Miljacki&rsquo;s Precedents in Critical Practice class......</p> <p> --</p> <p> Read the<a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank"> rest of this post</a> and contributions from other MIT Architecture students at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch_Kiosk!</a></p> RE-CONFIGURATION: PHONE BLOKS AND INAQUI CARNICERO lizziey 2013-10-11T10:10:41-04:00 >2013-10-14T16:55:27-04:00 <p> In case you missed it, this past Friday as a part of our architecture design lecture series we had Spanish architect Inaqui Carnicero (of Pitch House fame) in the AVT. We actually had a lot of amazing lectures this week- I also especially enjoyed Francine Houben of Mecanoo and Landscape Architect/Planner Fadi Masoud.</p> <p> &nbsp;</p> <p> Inaqui introduced his talk with a video about a concept for a new phone that would allow you to pick from a kit of parts to personalize and update your phone over time.&nbsp; I&rsquo;ve actually been meaning to post about this product for a while...</p> <p> --</p> <p> <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Read the rest of this post</a> and contributions from other MIT Architecture students at <a href="" rel="nofollow" target="_blank">Arch_Kiosk</a>!</p>