Rensselaer | Architecture Rensselaer | Architecture 2015-11-25T22:25:27Z Editor EK <![CDATA[[Recent Lecture] Testa & Weiser]]> 2015-11-25T22:22:37Z 2015-11-12T19:15:29Z Mon. Nov. 16th @ EMPAC


Testa & Weiser is a Los Angeles based architecture and design studio founded by partners Peter Testa and Devyn Weiser in 2002. The studio is known for conceptual and technical breakthroughs that integrate advanced material processes at all scales. From pioneering software applications to creating new composite building systems, Testa & Weiser is recognized as an international design leader redefining architecture.

Founding partners Peter Testa and Devyn Weiser are both co-founders of the MIT Emergent Design Group (EDG), which seeks to break new ground by combining developments in modeling theory, intelligent systems, organizational theory and the science of dynamics to enlarge the space of possibility for contemporary design and computation. Peter Testa has been a member of the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) Graduate and Post-Professional faculty since 2004. Testa holds an S.M.Arch.S. (History/Theory) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is a Registered Architect in California (NCARB Certificate). He is the recipient of numerous awards including the MIT Innovation Award and Design Arts Award of the National Endowment for the Arts.  Devyn Weiser joined the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) faculty in 2006 where she served as Undergraduate Thesis Coordinator from 2009-2013. Devyn Weiser holds a B.F.A. and B.Arch from the Rhode Island School of Design (with honors); and a MS.AAD from Columbia University, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation. 

Current Testa & Weiser projects include Factor(E) electric vehicle design and manufacturing complex for PSA Peugeot Citroën EV; ZXT housing and mixed – use towers in Shenzhen, China; House Gallery 5; X-NRG water and energy infrastructure for NASA; and Composite Order, a prototype building systems with a consortium of manufacturers. The studio has been featured in numerous publications including AD Architectural Design Magazine, The New Yorker, and The London Times, as well as books Extreme Textiles: Designing for High Performance; Skin + Bones: Parallel Practices in Fashion and Architecture; and FORM+CODE In Design, Art, and Architecture. Testa & Weiser exhibits at leading museums and galleries worldwide, including the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; National Art Center, Tokyo; Embankment Galleries, London; New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York; and Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, New York.In 2016 the firm’s work will be featured as one of twenty projects defining the digital turn in architecture at the Canadian Centre for Architecture(CCA) and Yale University School of Architecture (YSOA).

Information on the projects, publications, partners, and team at Testa and Weiser can be found here:
Sources | Testa & Weiser | MIT Emergent Design Group


Main Editor <![CDATA[Faculty Search:]]> 2015-10-30T00:00:53Z 2015-10-29T23:42:14Z ASSISTANT / ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR

The School of Architecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY, seeks candidates to fill a tenure track or tenured position as an Assistant Professor or Associate Professor. Candidates are desired who are accomplished in architectural design, specifically the application of experimental forms of computation to the innovative design of buildings and environments.

The successful candidate will provide expert graduate and undergraduate instruction in fundamental and advanced architectural and computational design, offer seminars, design studios and lecture courses, and participate in service and leadership to the school and discipline. The faculty member will be expected to advance disciplinary knowledge through architectural and computational design, research, and scholarship, contributing to the school’s commitment to emerging forms of computation in contemporary design. Candidates experienced in leadership and administration are strongly encouraged to apply.

Candidates seeking appointment at the level of tenure-track Assistant Professor must have completed a Master’s or Doctorate degree (or foreign degree equivalent) in architecture, and or terminal degree in a closely related field. Candidates must be engaged in pursuing a record of design and scholarly research in nationally recognized publications, competitions, exhibitions and other venues.

At the rank of tenured Associate Professor, candidates must meet the educational requirements for the rank of Assistant Professor, must demonstrate national recognition in their field, and must have tenure at a peer institution. Candidates without existing tenure must demonstrate the following accomplishments in three (3) or more years of post-education experience: a national reputation in research and/or scholarship, evidence of effective teaching, and a substantial record of program-building service to their home institution and profession

Applications will be considered on a rolling basis; applicants are strongly encouraged to submit by January 1, 2016, when the Search Committee will initiate its review process.

To apply, please send a letter of interest, curriculum vitae, and portfolio and relevant/recent work (10 pages formatted to 8.5” x11” portrait, as a PDF file not to exceed 10 megabytes) to Pamela Zepf, Executive Assistant, at *protected email*

We welcome candidates who will bring diverse intellectual, geographical, gender and ethnic perspectives to Rensselaer’s work and campus communities.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity, Race/Gender/Veterans/Disability Employer.

Main Editor <![CDATA[First Day of School]]> 2015-10-19T14:45:15Z 2011-10-11T00:15:13Z “Architecture is situated at a unique moment in history where a convergence of global interests demand that our discipline responds in a critical and innovative manner… ” (Evan Douglis, Dean)

Editor SB <![CDATA[[Recent Lecture] Marie Ange-Brayer]]> 2015-11-25T22:25:27Z 2015-10-26T17:51:22Z Thu Oct 29, 6pm @ EMPAC:

Marie Ange-Brayer: “Naturalizing Architecture”


Marie-Ange Brayer is currently Chief Curator of Design and Industrial Perspective for the MNAM-CCI collection at the Centre Pompidou, the largest collection of modern and contemporary art in Europe. From 1996 to 2014 Brayer was director of the Frac Centre in Orleans, France and in 1999 Brayer co-founded Archilab, an annual exhibition in Orleans, France that brings together young international architects and artists involved in research. In 2002 Brayer was appointed curator of the French Pavillion of the Venice Biennale of architecture with Béatrice Simonot and in 2008 was associate curator of the Third International Biennial of Contemporary Art of Seville (BIAC) for the “Youniverse” exhibition. More Recently, in 2013, Brayer curated Archilab “Naturalizing the Architecture” with Frederic Migayrou.

Brayer is an art and architecture critic who has published numerous articles. Currently she is working on a PhD at the EHESS (School of Advanced Studies in Social Sciences) in Paris, treating the architectural model since the Renaissance by tracing the history of its representation.

Images from Archilab 2013


Editor ML <![CDATA[F15 POSITIONS SERIES : What Ground?]]> 2015-10-25T01:57:21Z 2015-10-13T02:01:15Z Saturday, November 21st, 2:00pm

“What Ground?”_

On Saturday, November 21st, 2015, the student-coordinated discussions series at Rensselaer, Positions Series, will host “What Ground?,” with guest speakers Adam Frampton (OnlyIf, principal) and James Ramsey (raad, principal). The presentations will be followed by a round-table discussion with all in attendance.

“What Ground?” poses the following:

An inquiry into the ways in which the ground has veered from its traditional figure-ground relationship absorption within architectural and urbanistic constructs. What possibilities and opportunities might emerge from said alternative propositions for the ground within urban space? What implications might these instances yield across scales – from the street to domestic interiors – in the quotidian patterns of cities?

Please email any questions about this event to *protected email*

About the Participants

James Ramsey is the principal of raad and the creator of the Lowline. James’ experience in design began at Yale University, where he won a Bates Fellowship to study cathedral design in Europe. He then went to work as a satellite engineer for NASA, where he was a part of the team that created the Pluto Fast Flyby and the Cassini satellites. After his time at NASA, James gained large firm experience at DMSAS in Washington, DC and small firm knowledge, upon relocating to New York, at the boutique outfit, Penny Yates Architects. While teaching design at the Parsons School of Design, James worked to put the pieces in place to start his own design practice in 2004. Raad has since built over a hundred projects, both in NYC and across the country. James Ramsey is the inventor of the Remote Skylight and founder of raadStuff.

Adam Frampton is an architect and the Principal of Only If. He previously worked as an Associate at the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) in Rotterdam and Hong Kong. During almost seven years there, he was involved in over 20 projects, responsible for leading teams producing architectural and urban designs in China, Taiwan, Saudi Arabia, the U.A.E., Bahrain, and India. Most significantly, he worked on OMA’s competition-winning design of the Taipei Performing Arts Center from 2008-2013 and led several phases of its design and construction. His independent research on Hong Kong urbanism has been published as the co-authored Cities Without Ground: A Hong Kong Guidebook, which maps the city’s three-dimensional networks of pedestrian circulation and public space, and has received widespread popular and academic press acclaim. This work was also exhibited in the 12th International Architecture Exhibition of the Venice Biennale. His research and design projects have also been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, Storefront for Art and Architecture, the Center for Architecture, New York, and the Van Alen Institute, New York. He holds a Masters in Architecture from Princeton University School of Architecture and a Bachelors of Environmental Design Summa cum Laude from the University of Colorado Boulder. He is a registered architect in the Netherlands and the United States, and a member of the American Institute of Architects.

Editor ML <![CDATA[[Recent Lecture] Steven Ehrlich]]> 2015-10-28T23:38:56Z 2015-10-23T11:27:07Z Mon Oct 26 6pm @ EMPAC:

Steven Ehrlich: “Evolving Multicultural Modernism”_

Steven Ehrlich, founding partner of Ehrlich Architects and member RPI class of ’68, learned early on the significance of how architecture responds to the culture and the environment – he is a self-proclaimed “architectural anthropologist.” Upon graduating from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Architecture, Ehrlich spent six years living and working in Africa, serving for two years with the Peace Corps as their first architect in Marrakech, Morocco. He later traveled across the Sahara and taught architecture at Ahmadu Bello University in Nigeria. The lessons of indigenous building were instrumental in forming Ehrlich’s approach to design and continue to influence the firm’s work today.

Committed to educational and professional development, Ehrlich is a Visiting Professor at USC and has taught at UCLA and Sci Arch and has been a guest critic at Harvard, Arizona State University and Yale. He has lectured widely at universities and symposiums in Asia, Europe, South America, Australia and the U.S. and also sits on various awards juries across the country. Steven served on the AIA Los Angeles Board of Directors from 2008-2010 and sits on the Governor’s Board at OTIS School of Design and the DBIA National Committee on Design Excellence.

In 2014, Ehrlich Architects was awarded the 2015 AIA Architecture Firm Award by the National American Institute of Architects’ (AIA).


Editor EK <![CDATA[Licensing and IDP Presentation]]> 2015-10-21T21:38:53Z 2015-10-21T21:32:38Z Thurs, Oct 22nd, 6:00pm @ DCC324


Please join Harry Falconer, AIA, NCARB and Robert Lopez, RA (RPI Class of ’88) in the Darrin Communications Center this Thursday evening for a brief seminar/information session titled “Leading Voices: Straight from the Source” on all things required to become a licensed architect. This session is open to all students in the B.Arch and M.Arch I program. Bring questions!


Editor EK <![CDATA[Blast-Off! Francis Bitonti & Russ Leslie]]> 2015-10-20T14:52:12Z 2015-10-18T03:01:28Z Wed Oct. 21st, 6:00pm @ GR120.

Blast-Off! Discussion:


Adjunct Professor Francis Bitonti and Associate Lighting Research Center Director Russell Leslie will host this semester’s Blast-Off! Career Discussion event. The event is set for Wednesday, October 21st at 6:00 p.m. in the Greene 120. Francis Bitonti and Russ Leslie will share information about their career paths with students over a pizza supper. This is an excellent opportunity to learn more about career planning, graduate school options, making the transition from student to professional, and many other topics on what the future of young architects holds.

Please join us this Wednesday in the gallery for discussion and dinner.


Main Editor <![CDATA[Combs, Mistur, Perry and Diniz at ACADIA’15]]> 2015-10-21T16:11:45Z 2015-10-20T14:42:48Z Faculty News:

Lonn Combs (M.Arch 1 Director) and Chris Perry (Geofutures Program Director) are Co-Technical Chairs for ACADIA 2015, hosted by the University of Cincinnati, Oct 22-24. Associate Dean Mark Mistur will serve as a session chair. Assistant Professor Nancy Diniz, will serve as a session chair in addition to presenting a paper. The conference theme, Computational Ecologies: Design in the Anthropocene, was developed by Perry and Combs whom also co-curated the keynote lecture series, curated the projects exhibition, and edited the conference proceedings publication and exhibition catalog.

Additionally, student/faculty design research from CASE and the Geofutures MArch II program will be featured in the conference exhibition.

Editor ML <![CDATA[Competition Call: “Closed Worlds” (Storefront, NYC)]]> 2015-10-18T20:06:09Z 2015-10-18T19:29:11Z Deadline: Monday, November 16, 2015 11:59pm.

Assistant Professor Lydia Kallipoliti, along with Michelle Addington, Eva Franch, Mitchell Joachim, and Michael Young will jury the Storefront for Art and Architecture’s forthcoming Closed Words Design Competition. As part of the competition jury, Kallipoliti will also serve as curator of the exhibition

What do outer space capsules, submarines, and office buildings have in common? Each was conceived as a closed system: a self-sustaining physical environment demarcated from its surroundings by a boundary that does not allow for the transfer of matter or energy.

The history of twentieth century architecture, design, and engineering has been strongly linked to the conceptualization and production of closed systems. As partial interpretations of the world in time and in space, closed systems identify and secure materials necessary for life. Contemporary discussions about global warming, recycling, and sustainability have emerged as direct conceptual constructs related to the study and analysis of closed systems.

In February 2016, Storefront for Art and Architecture will open Closed Worlds, an exhibition of 41 living prototypes built over the last century that present an unexplored genealogy of closed resource regeneration systems. From the space program to countercultural architectural groups experimenting with autonomous living, the exhibition documents a larger disciplinary transformation in the postwar period and the rise of a new environmental consensus in the form of a synthetic naturalism, where the laws of nature and metabolism are displaced from the domain of wilderness to the domain of cities and buildings.

For this exhibition, Storefront for Art and Architecture is looking for a designer to produce the 42nd piece of the chronology of experiments. The selected designer(s) will have the opportunity to use the installation as a testing ground for a new closed system. The designer will work closely with the Closed Worlds curatorial team, but will be responsible for the implementation of the installation and related exhibition materials and will lead overall exhibition design.

Competition Jury

Michelle Addington, Hines Professor of Sustainable Architectural Design at Yale University
Eva Franch, Director of Storefront for Art and Architecture
Mitchell Joachim, Associate Professor of Practice at New York University and Principal of Terreform One
Lydia Kallipoliti, Assistant Professor of Architecture at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Curator of Closed Worlds exhibition
Michael Young, Assistant Professor of Architecture at the Cooper Union and Principal of Young/Ayata Architects


Registration Deadline————————————————November 10, 2015
Deadline to Submit Questions————————————-November 3, 2015
Answers to Submitted Questions Posted Online————-November 6, 2015
Digital Submission Deadline—————————————November 16, 2015
Physical Submission Deadline————————————November 17, 2015
Design/Management/Construction Period———————-Dec 2015 – Jan/Feb 2


This call is open to anyone with demonstrated experience in the conceptualization, design, and production of spatial prototypes, including architects, artists, designers, engineers, and environmental scientists, among others.

The winning team will be based in New York or be able to easily produce and manage the final design and construction of the installation and hold regular meetings with the Closed Worlds curatorial team. The winning team will be able to work intensely within a given time frame for the preparation and installation of the exhibition between November 2015 and February 2016.

Applications will be accepted from individuals and firms, and architects need not be licensed. Interdisciplinary collaborations are strongly encouraged. Applicants outside of New York City are eligible to apply, but housing and transportation will not be provided.

See Call for Ideas: Closed Worlds Design Competition for more information