AHRA Newsletter:
April-May 2014

If you would like to receive this information by e-mail, and you haven't yet signed up as a member of AHRA, please follow the link to the AHRA website for details of how to register on the database. Membership is currently free and is open to all humanities researchers working in Schools of Architecture and related disciplines both in the UK and overseas. Please also encourage colleagues to register here: http://www.ahra-architecture.org/registration/

If you are planning a research event that you would like to promote through the newsletter, please log in to the AHRA website and post the details by clicking on the 'Post Your Event' link under the 'Events' menu. These details will appear on the 'Future Events' page within a few days (subject to moderation) and will also be included in the next issue of the Newsletter. If you have not logged in to the site before, you should enter your default username ('firstnamelastname') and click on the 'forgotten your password' link for further instructions.

To promote other items of interest (new books, courses, other research resources etc) please send details by email to Stephen Walker at:

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The next newsletter will be issued in June 2014


New Events


2nd Alvar Aalto Researchers Network Seminar: Call for papers

Rovaniemi, Finland 16-18 February 2015

February 16 2015 - February 18 2015

The 2nd Alvar Aalto Researchers Network Seminar, “Aalto beyond Finland. Architecture and Design” aims to create a network of researchers interested in the work of the Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. The meeting in Rovaniemi, in February 2015, will be an opportunity to present up-to-date research and provide a significant meeting point for those fascinated by Aalto’s buildings and projects, in a relaxed and collegial atmosphere.

Aalto’s work has had an exceptional impact beyond Finland since the opening of his office in Turku in 1927. Before World War II, his furniture was exhibited in strategic venues in Europe and America, from which Aalto established a solid network of professional contacts. During the post-war period, he took on many assignments and received great recognition in various foreign countries. His buildings, scattered around the world, as well as his unrealised projects, contributed to spreading Aalto’s design method in different architectural communities, thereby proving its validity outside Finland. Even countries in which Aalto did not design any projects or construct any buildings, such as Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, and Portugal, were influenced by his work. Although recent scholarly studies have contributed to an exploration of Aalto’s work abroad and its impact in the international context, they are fragmented, dwelling on national questions, without a holistic view. The 2nd Alvar Aalto Researchers Network Seminar “Aalto beyond Finland. Architecture and Design” strives for a comprehensive survey of the impact of Aalto’s architectural and design works abroad, in order to highlight those thematic communalities and connections among different international experiences.

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Mon 16 February 2015

Industries of Architecture: Relations, Process, Production

11th International AHRA Conference

School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape, Newcastle University, UK, and various venues around Newcastle

November 13 2014 - November 15 2014

This two and a half day conference invites architectural theorists, historians, designers and others to explore the industrial, technical and socio-economic contexts in which building is constituted that are all too often sidelined within the architectural humanities. Industries of Architecture will also host a number of open-structured debate-oriented workshops with the aim of bringing into the discussion those working in building, technology, law, practice management, construction or in industry together with researchers in the architectural humanities. In addition, the opening night features public screenings of a series of artists’ films that explore the production of architecture, including the work of Harun Farocki and Allan Sekula.

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Thu 13 November 2014

Building with Light: the Legacy of Robert Elwall

An International Symposium on Architectural Photography


November 13 2014 - November 14 2014

The Royal Institute of British Architects announces an international symposium on architectural photography in conjunction with the first major retrospective of the British architectural photographer Edwin Smith (1912-1971), whose prolific work helped redefine the notion of post WW II Britishness.

The symposium will honour the legacy of Robert Elwall (1953-2012), an acclaimed British historian of architectural photography and curator, since 1976, of the RIBA's Photographs Collection that now bears his name.  With some million and a half architectural images, the Robert Elwall Photographs Collection is one of the most extensive resources for the study of the influence of photography on architecture and the creative process.

The symposium will be held 13 -14 November 2014 in London.

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Thu 13 November 2014

“Composite Cities”

7th edition of EURAU

Faculty of Architecture of Istanbul Technical University

November 12 2014 - November 15 2014

The theme refers to the compositeness of our cities occurring in various forms and various scales; ranging from ever increasing complexity of one-through new urban emergences adding up to the existing urban environment and continuously redefining our urban experience- to tranquility of another-still holding different urban conditions stitching together to an enriched urban experience. Thus the conference aims to enable a medium to discuss the complex relationship between urban form and urban experience through the composite character of our cities explained in four topics-possible states of composite being: hybrid city, morphed city, fragmented city  and mutated city. The conference is expected to evolve around the question of “how?”s of architectural practice for the composite city. Hence, the essentials of architectural realities- scale, order, space, place, program, content, identity …- will define the backbone of the discussions.

The abstract submission deadline is extended to April 30, 2014

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Wed 12 November 2014

Architectural Design Research Symposium,


August 29 2014 - August 30 2014

This symposium provides a forum to reflect on the emergence of research through design in the context of Architectural Education and Critical Practice. As articulated in recent publications and on the evidence of postgraduate activity around the globe, design as the primary vehicle for research innovation has entered a confident and mature stage.

What are the themes that emerge from this body of work? What tactics have evolved through conceiving design as the core research method? What are the "unique national features and mentalities that continue to exist and flourish"? (Koolhaas, 2013)

The 2014 Venice Biennale and its theme of Fundamentals, provides a stimulating space in which to address these questions. This event is associated with the New Zealand exhibition at the 2014 Venice Architecture Biennale. The symposium will be held at the venue of the NZ exhibition, the Palazzo Pisani Santa Marina, Calle de le Erbe, Cannaregio.

Interested participants are invited to submit a 1000 word presentation.

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Fri 29 August 2014

Autonomy Reconsidered: Ethics in Architecture, Urbanism and Landscape

ISPA 2014 Conference

Delft, Netherlands

July 09 2014 - July 11 2014

Contemporary philosophy and architecture discourse alike marginalize the ethical dimension of architecture.  Yet, it seems that the ethical dimension in both architecture and philosophy has been compromised because both disciplines have not established a clear interdisciplinary understanding of autonomy. Together, and in service to both fields of study, we must reconsider what autonomy means for both architecture and philosophy, or rather, for architecture philosophy.

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Wed 9 July 2014

Riverine: Architecture and Water

University of Kent, Canterbury, UK

June 26 2014 - June 28 2014

Human settlements may be divided broadly between inland ones often located on high ground, such as the hill towns of Urbino and Jerusalem, or those of inland plains such as Brasilia and Novosibirsk, and those located on waterways, on rivers close to the sea. We are interested in the latter, and seek to tease out and explore architectural, planning, artistic and literary backgrounds to cities as diverse as London, Rotterdam, New York, Venice and Alexandria; in other words, we are interested in human settlements whose origins depend upon rivers.


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Thu 26 June 2014

Moving Mountains:

Studies  in  Place,  Society  and  Cultural  Representation

University  of  Edinburgh  

June 18 2014

Mountains    have    been    considered    embodiments    of    higher    spiritual    goals    and    peak     experiences     since     ancient     times.          By     viewing     mountains,     climbing     and     experiencing     changing     atmospheres,     people     have     undergone     physical     and     spiritual     quests,     the     character     of     which     varies     depending     on     the     motivation     and     identity     of     the     participant(s).               The     consistent     presence     of     mountains     in     legends,     myths,     literature,     artistic     and     architectural     creations     suggests     their     cultural,     religious     and     social     significance.     Additionally,     mountains     and     their     surrounding     landscape     have     been     the     focus     of     cartographic     and     scientific     work,     mountaineering    expeditions    and    other    kinds    of    explorations.  


In    order    to    more    fully    understand    the    role    of    mountains    in    culture    and    society,    the   History   of   Art   Department   at   the   University   of   Edinburgh   and   the   Edinburgh    School    of    Architecture    and    Landscape    Architecture    are    hosting    an    inter-­‐ disciplinary    conference    and    an    exhibition    of    practice-­‐based    material.    We    invite    abstracts   of   no   more   than   300   words   addressing   questions   and   proposing   works    relevant   to   the   role   of   mountains   in   the   in   the   humanities,   arts   and   design.   As   this    is   intended   to   be   a   highly   interdisciplinary   conference,   we   welcome   submissions    from    a    wide    range    of    subject    areas,    which    include    art    history,    architecture,    anthropology,    cultural    studies,    film    studies    geography,    literature,    theology    and    philosophy,   among   others.     

Topics   may   include   but   are   not   limited   to:      

The   integration   of   mountains   into   architectural   design   and   artistic    creations  

City   and   mountains  

Mountain   landscapes,   caves   and   paths   

The   impact   of   mountains   on   religious   practices     

Memory   and   mountains  

Studies   of   Mountain   communities   

Cultural   representations   of   mountains   (cartography,   iconography,    photography)   

‘Peak’   Experiences   and   Mountain   Views     

Atmosphere   and   the   aura   of   mountains   

Religious   experiences   and   mountains   


 Confirmed   keynote   speakers   include   Professor   Veronica   della   Dora   of   the    University   of   London,   Professor   Tim   Ingold   of   the   University   of   Aberdeen   and    Eamonn   O’Carragain   of   University   College   Cork.  


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Wed 18 June 2014



University of Copenhagen, Denmark

June 12 2014 - June 13 2014

For a decade, the World in Denmark conferences have brought prominent interna- tional designers and planners to Copenhagen.

This 10th conference investigates the role of Denmark – or more broadly the Nordic countries – in the world.

Scholars and practitioners are invited to submit abstracts that discuss cultural encounters in open space design and planning.

International key note speakers from landscape architec- ture, urban design and urbanism will reflect on recent interventions in the urban landscape.



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Thu 12 June 2014

British Pavilion at the 14th International Architecture Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia

open call: “Absorbing Modernity: 1914-2014”


June 07 2014

The title of the 2014 Biennale is “Fundamentals”. In an exciting change to how this biennale is organised, overall biennale director Rem Koolhaas has outlined his vision that each national pavilion will contribute to a major exhibition-research project.
We are seeking proposals that respond to Koolhaas’s theme “Absorbing Modernity: 1914-2014”. We see this as the starting point for proposals that will investigate an aspect of British architecture during in this era and which will help reveal how British architecture adapted to the condition of modernity. We anticipate that this project may help place recent British architecture in a new light, and might encourage us to look at the period in a new way.
Our brief, Koolhaas’s statement on ‘Absorbing Modernity’, and details of how to submit proposals can all be found on the British Council blog ‘Back of the Envelope’. (see link below)

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Sat 7 June 2014

Re-Use of the Modernist Project in the City

Call for Participation

Venice Biennale

June 07 2014

To participate, one must submit a short abstract in English to : .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Please see attached poster for full details.

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Sat 7 June 2014

A Call for Participation- The Venice Biennale Sessions 2014

Use-ReUse- Adaptive Modernism Workshop

Venice Biennale 2014

June 07 2014

As part of the Venice Biennale University Program, the Design School at the College of Management Academic Studies in Rishon LeZion, Israel, will lead a workshop on the opening day of the Biennale (June 7th).


The purpose of the workshop is to rethink the current value and role of the modernist buildings in their evolving and divergent urban settings.


The workshop will consist of brief presentations in various media surrounding research, conceptual projection, art, video, photography, virtual poster and architectural planning.


To participate, please submit a short abstract (250-300 words) in English, focusing on adaptive re-use for modernist architecture.


Submission deadline: 31 March 2014

Notifications: 30 April 2014

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Sat 7 June 2014

The Architecture of Spirituality in a Multicultural Setting

The 6th Symposium on Architecture, Culture and Spirituality (ACS 6)

Trinity College in the University of Toronto. Toronto, CANADA.

June 06 2014 - June 08 2014

The 6th Annual Symposium on Architecture, Culture and Spirituality (ACS 6) will take place at Trinity Colege in the University of Toronto ( http://www.trinity.utoronto.ca/ ), located in the heart of Toronto’s midtown core, June 5-8, 2014.

The topic is “The Architecture of Spirituality in a Multicultural Settingand will explore the nature of spiritual expression as articulated in form and space within a multicultural framework. This objective will be pursued in paper-project-presentation sessions responding to the themes described below. As always in ACS symposia, optional meditation will be offered each morning and there will be free time for connecting to oneself, other people and the surroundings.


 IDENTITY: As global economics and conflicts accelerate intercontinental migration, many spiritual traditions find themselves striving to secure and maintain identity within a completely new and otherwise foreign context. This theme considers the dynamics of faithfully re-creating the architecture of a spiritual tradition, and/or finding expressions of form, space, and ritual that speak to their adopted landscape.

SHARING: In many cases, it has not been feasible to carry out spiritual expression with their traditional landscape.  This theme gives consideration to such possibilities as accommodations within the workplace, the creation of multi-faith worship centres, and sharing of existing religious spaces by more than one faith tradition as a means to embrace a multi-cultural environment

CONFLICT: Because sacred sites, buildings, and iconic objects represent primary manifestations of a spiritual tradition, they are often prime targets of sectarian, interfaith, and politically motivated violence.  This theme provides opportunities to explore the nature of this phenomenon.

FORGIVENESS: This theme provides opportunities to explore the question of how design and location of spiritual space and form can contribute to ameliorating tensions, diffusing misunderstandings, and resolving potential conflicts as we seek to find wholeness and peaceful co-existence.


Compelling proposals that relate to the symposium focus but which fall outside of these themes will also be considered for acceptance.

Special Events

Two special event are planned. One is a keynote lecture by McGill Architecture Professor Alberto Pérez-Gómez. The second will be a Sacred Space Tour of Toronto buildings, gardens, and urban settings.


500 words long proposals will be peer-reviewed by the symposium co-chairs and a selected group of ACS members. The deadline is January 27th, 2014. 


For more details and information, visit website: http://www.acsforum.org/symposium2014/ or email Julio Bermudez: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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Fri 6 June 2014

Creative Adjacencies, new challenges for Architecture, Design and Urbanism for updating, modernizing

Ghent, Belgium

June 03 2014 - June 07 2014

“Creative Adjacencies” will focus on unexpected phenomena of emergent liaisons,  on urban contrasts and conflicts, on unusual professional collaborations or creative joined forces as the generator of new possibilities, new strategies in a dynamic contemporary environment.  Conference themes will engage in different and divers approaches in the new curricula-development of Architecture, Design and Urbanism.  The sessions will address a range of research, design and educational reflections and strategies on creative solutions for complex situations. 


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Tue 3 June 2014

Setting Out: 11th AHRA Annual Student Research Symposium, 2014

Call for Papers

University College, Dublin

May 19 2014

The AHRA invites proposals from PhD candidates in architecture for contributions to its 11th Annual Student Research Symposium, which will be hosted by the School of Architecture, Landscape and the Built Environment, University College, Dublin, on May 19th 2014. The symposium will include a keynote presentation by Professor Anthony Vidler, Brown University.

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Mon 19 May 2014


Urban and Landscape Days XI

Tallinn, Estonia

May 08 2014 - May 11 2014

The conference aims to explore histories and geographies of socialism and post-socialism in relation to three themes: 1) architecture and urban planning, 2) land use and landscape, and 3) property rights.

Please send your abstract (300 words) and short bio (60 words) by Dec 2, 2013 to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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Thu 8 May 2014

In The City

Talks and events about Sheffield and beyond

Sheffield, UK

May 01 2014 - June 05 2014

The Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Sheffield are extremely pleased to announce In The City, a series of public events being held throughout May and early June this year. In The City is a celebration and exploration of urban existence, heritage, and experience, drawing on research taking place within the faculty. The exciting programme engages with a variety of themes including modernist housing, forgotten places, activism, musical heritage and personal narratives. The university and various venues around Sheffield will hold host to talks, film screenings, musical performances, symposiums and more.

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Thu 1 May 2014

Equalities of Wellbeing & Housing Workshop

UCL, London

April 29 2014 - April 29 2014

A one-day seminar for the AHRC project Equalities of Wellbeing that examines current issues of UK housing. 

Panels on: space and housing standards, equality and affordability, design and wellbeing.  

Speakers include:  Alex Ely (Mae Architects); Phil Hamilton (Peter Barber Architects); Sarah Wigglesworth (Sarah Wigglesworth Architects); Brian Quinn (CABE/Design Council); Deborah Garvie (Shelter); Maddy Power (The Equality Trust); Andrew Saint (Survey of London); Andrea Phillips (Goldsmiths); Anne Bottomley (Kent); David Roberts (UCL). 

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Tue 29 April 2014

New Publications

Architecture and the Paradox of Dissidence

Edited by Ines Weizman

Architecture and the Paradox of Dissidence maps out and expands upon the methodologies of architectural action and reinvigorates the concept of dissent within the architectural field. It expands the notion of dissidence to other similar practices and strategies of resistance, in a variety of historical and geographical contexts.The book also discusses how the gestures and techniques of past struggles, as well as ‘dilemmas’ of working in politically suppressive regimes, can help to inform those of today.

This collection of essays from expert scholars demonstrates the multiple responses to this subject, the potential and dangers of dissidence, and thus constructs a robust lexicon of concepts that will point to possible ways forward for politically and theoretically committed architects and practitioners.

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Mon 25 November 2013

New Courses

MA Architectural History, The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, London

Course web site

web site thumbnail available soon

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Wed 9 January 2013

MA in Architectural Design

School of Architecture, University of Sheffield

Course web site

web site thumbnail available soon

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Wed 9 January 2013

MA in Urban Design

School of Architecture, The University of Sheffield

Course web site

web site thumbnail available soon

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Wed 9 January 2013

MA Spatial Practices: Art, Architecture, and Performance

University College for the Creative Arts

Course web site

web site thumbnail available soon

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Thu 24 December 2009

MSc Urban Studies

University College London

Course web site

web site thumbnail available soon

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Thu 24 December 2009