AR448: Professional-Practice II

Game! Set! Match? – Crib sheets, strategies, and conjecture for contemporary practice in the age of crisis and collapse.

Woodbury University, Fall 2009.
Burbank Campus 7500 Glenoaks Blvd. Burbank, CA 91510

Instructor/Section: John Southern/F1
Course Schedule: Fridays 9AM-12PM. Room: A101

Course Description:

Since the global financial complications of 2008 brought the world to the brink of a complete economic melt-down, the words crisis and collapse have become frequent terms used to describe the state of the architectural profession, as well as society as a whole. Building projects that were projected to redefine urban skylines across the globe have only been realized as vacant lots or open pits. Suburban neighborhoods reel under the weight of mass foreclosures, some even becoming veritable ghost towns overnight. The architectural profession itself has been shattered by the more palpable tremors of the events of 2008 with some firms laying off as much as 70% of their operating staff while others implode in the vacuum of evaporating commissions.

Despite the doomsday scenarios predicted by economists, journalists, and cultural pundits, it is likely that society will rebound and the architectural profession will eventually begin its recovery, albeit in a potentially different form. In order to understand how we got to this point, and what may come next, the course will examine a sampling from the last thirty years of critical architectural discourse. Starting with the “Generation of ‘68” we will explore how idealogical positions toward site, program, urbanism, and representation have been redefined by advances in technology, pop-culture, and the inevitable social and spatial transformations brought about by late 20th Century Capitalism.

With these crib sheets, strategies, and conjectures at our disposal we will create our own fluid positions that transcend the current environment of crisis and look to a future concept of projective discourse that is perhaps more resilient and responsive to the uncertainties that face us in a world shadowed by the specters of “Peak Oil”, “The Global War on Terror”, and “collapse”.

Week 01: Group Meeting/Section Assignments

Week 02: Theory + Practice

Reinhold Martin, “Toward a Utopian Realism,” Harvard Design Magazine Spring/Summer 2005 edition, (Cambridge, MA, 2005), pp.1-5.
Stan Allen, “Practice Vs. Project”, in Practice: Architecture, Technique, and Representation, (New York, NY. Routledge, 2009), pp. 11-21.
Robert Somol & Sarah Whiting, “Notes around the Doppler Effect and other Moods of Modernism” in Perspecta 33: Mining Autonomy, Michael Osman, Adam Ruedig, Matthew Seidel, Lisa Tilney, eds. (Cambridge: MIT Press, 2002), pp. 72-77.

Week 03: Group Meeting/Lecture- Research by Ewan Branda

Readings TBA

Week 04: Some Salvos from the Sixties

Peter Cook, Ron Herron, Denis Crompton, Warren Chalk, David Greene, and Michael Webb, “Archigram” (New York, NY. Princeton Architectural Press, 1999.), pp.8-19, 24-29, 36-43, 46-59, 78-81, 86-115, 120-123, & 134-137.
Archizoom Associati “No Stop City” in Exit Utopia: Archtiectural Proocations 1956-76, Martin Van Schaik and Otakar Macel eds. (New York, NY. Prestel, 2005), pp.157-176.
Andrea Branzi, “No Stop City: Archizoom Associates, 1969-1972” in Exit Utopia: Archtiectural Proocations 1956-76, Martin Van Schaik and Otakar Macel eds. (New York, NY. Prestel, 2005), pp.177-182.
Super Studio, “The Continuous Monument: An Architectural Model for Total Urbanization” in Exit Utopia: Archtiectural Proocations 1956-76, Martin Van Schaik and Otakar Macel eds. (New York, NY. Prestel, 2005), pp.125-145.
Sander Woertman, “The Distant Winking of a Star, or the Horror of the Real” in Exit Utopia: Archtiectural Proocations 1956-76, Martin Van Schaik and Otakar Macel eds. (New York, NY. Prestel, 2005), pp.146-155.
Peter Lang and William Menking, “The Continuous Monument: An Architectural Model for Total Urbanization”, in Superstudio: Life Without Objects, (Milan, IT. Skira, 2003), pp. 122-163.

Week 05: Group Meeting/Lecture- Site by Andrea Dietz

Readings TBA

Week 06: Urban Matters from Past and Present

Colin Rowe and Fred Koetter, “Collage City” in Theorizing a New Agenda for Architecture: An Anthology of Architectural Theory, 1965-1995. Kate Nesbit, ed. (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 1996), pp. 268-293.
Fredric Jameson, “Postmodernism and Consumer Society” in The Anti-Aesthetic: Essays on Postmodern Culture, Hal Foster, ed. (Townsend, Washington: Bay Press, 1983), pp. 111-125.
Rem Koolhaas, “The Generic City”, in SMLXL (New York, NY, Monacelli Press,1995), pp. 959-971.
James Corner, “Not Unlike Itself: Landscape Strategy Now”, in The New Architectural Pragmatism, William S. Saunders, ed. (Minneapolis, MN, University of Minnesota Press, 2007), pp.89-93.

Week 07: Group Meeting/Lecture- Programming: Selected strategies from the not so distant past. By John Southern

Bernard Tschumi, “Introduction and Illustrated Index” in The Manhattan Transcripts (London: Academy Group LTD, 1981.), pp. 7-12 & XVII-XXIX.
Bernard Tschumi, “Spaces and Events” in Architecture and Disjunction, (Cambridge, MA., 1994), pp.139-150.
Rem Koolhaas, “Parc de la Villette”, in Rem Koolhaas: OMA (New York, NY. Princeton Architectural Press, 1991), pp.86-95.
Rem Koolhaas, “National Library of France” in Rem Koolhaas: OMA (New York, NY. Princeton Architectural Press, 1991), pp.132-139.
Rem Koolhaas, “Center for Art and Media Technology” in Rem Koolhaas: OMA (New York, NY. Princeton Architectural Press, 1991), pp.140-150.
*Additional suggested reading:
Ana Miljacki, Amanda Reeser Lawrence, & Ashley Schafer, “2 Architects, 10 Questions on Program: Rem Koolhaas + Bernard Tschmui” in Praxis 8: Re:Programming, Amanda Reeser Lawrence & Ashley Schafer, eds. (Cambridge, MA, 2006), pp. 6-15.

Week 08: Mid-Term 10.16.09 (Location TBA)

Week09: Group Meeting/Lecture- Representation: By Heather Scott Peterson

Readings TBA

Week 10: Diagramming, Datascaping, Urban Negotiation, and Game Theory

Stan Allen, “Notations + Diagrams: Mapping the Intangible”, in Practice: Architecture, Technique, and Representation, (New York, NY. Routledge, 2009), pp. 41-69.
Winy Maas, “Datascape,” in FARMAX: Excursions in Density, MVRDV, Winy Maas and Jacob van Rijs eds. (Rotterdam: 010 publishers), pp. 98-103.
Roger Sherman, “If, Then: Shaping Change as a Strategic Basis for Design”, in 306090: Autonomous Urbanism, Alexander F. Briseno, Emily Abruzzo, and Jonathan D. Solomon, eds.
(New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2008), pp.103-115.
One Architecture, “Six Under a Tennis Court” in One Architecture: Urban Projects, (Berlin, DE, Aedes, 1998), pp. 5-12.

Week 11: Group Meeting/Lecture- Production: By David Freeland

Readings TBA

Week 12: Digital Utopias / Cyber Realities / Network Culture

William Gibson, Neuromancer, (New York, NY, Ace Books, 1984), pp. 43-69.
Willam Gibson, Spook Country, (New York, NY, Berkley Books, 2007), pp.68-76 & 80-89.
Sherry Turkle, “E-Futures& E-Personae” in Designing for a Digital World, Neil Leach, ed. (New York, NY, Academy Press, 2002), pp. 31-37.
Kazys Varnelis and Anne Friedberg, “Place: The Networking of Public Space” in Networked Publics, Kazys Varnelis, ed. (Cambridge, MA, 2008), pp.15-42.
Kazys Varnelis, Ether: An Architecture of Self-Imagination in 306090, Issue 6: Shifting Infrastructures, Alexander F. Briseno, Emily Abruzzo, and Jonathan D. Solomon, eds. (New York: Princeton Architectural Press, 2004), pp.18-27.

Week 13: Group Meeting/Lecture- Tectonics and Materials: By Ingalill Wahlroos-Ritter

Week 14: Project Development (Thanksgiving Holiday, NO CLASS)

Week 15: Studio Finals (Meeting by Appointment)

Week 16: Final Reviews 12.11.09 (Location TBA)