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AIAD Latest Articles

SPOTLIGHT | Illuminart Featured in 'Concentrate'

AIA Detroit has proudly partnered with the talented folks at Illuminart for the past two years, so we were super excited to see Brienne Willcock and Robert White featured on concentratemedia.com. Illuminart is the designing force behind the lighting at Shed 3 for our 2013 & 2014 Celebration of Architecture; the cobalt blue and fuschia lighting schemes that you could see from down the street in Eastern Market are all because these guys know how to light a building.  They also helped to pull in Fantasee Lighting, who brings the equipment and skilled labor needed to bring to life Brienne's concept for the building.  We are eternally grateful for these folks, they certainly deserve the media attention.

The below article was originally featured on concentratemedia.com on Feb. 4th, 2015.  It was written by Patrick Dunn, an Ann Arbor-based freelance writer and a senior writer at Concentrate and Metromode, and the photographs featured in the original article were taken by Doug Coombe.

To see the article in its original publication and to view more photos taken during their interview, visit Concentrate Media's website HERE.

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CALL FOR PRESENTATIONS | Structures for Inclusion 15 Detroit

Lawrence Technological University College of Architecture and Design and Design Corps are proud to announce a partnership to present the Structures for Inclusion Conference 15 in Detroit.
 
Background:
In October of 2000, Design Corps, a community based non-profit organization, sponsored a conference at Princeton University. The purpose of this conference is to bring together and share the best ideas and practices that are reaching those currently un-served and underserved by architecture. These efforts are often grounded on two common beliefs that communities and individuals should be included in the design decisions that affect them and architects and communities should work together to identify their shared values and goals in the collaborative process of defining quality design. Since the first SFI at Princeton University, it has been hosted at various institutions including the University of Virginia, the University of Texas at Austin, Harvard University, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, the University of Minnesota at Minneapolis, and the Parsons New School for Design among others. The conference has become internationally recognized as a thought-provoking forum to learn about grass roots efforts and alternative practices making architecture more accessible.
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EVENT | AIAS Annual Beaux Arts Ball

AIA Detroit is a proud sponsor of this year's 6th annual AIAS Beaux Arts Ball.  Join the University of Detroit Mercy and Lawrence Technological University's American Institute of Architecture Students chapters on February 13th at St. Andrews Hall in Detroit for a night of networking and dancing.

BEAUX ARTS BALL HISTORY
Historically, Beaux Arts Ball was an annual costume ball traditioally hosted by studuents at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris.  In 1931, it's reputation had spread to New York, where famous architects began dressing up as their own buildings for the event.  This trend continued to live on in architecture schools across the country, including here in Michigan, where our local architecture schools would host a similarly styled event attended by faculty and students alike.  In 2010, after years of not having a Beaux Arts Ball at any of the architecture schools, the AIAS chapters at Lawrence Tech and University of Detroit Mercy decided to work together to revitalize this annual event.  Past venues have included the Detroit Yacht Club on Belle Isle, the Fox Theatre, and the Detroit Masonic Temple, but the students are excited to try something new with the historic St. Andrews Hall this year.
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Other Industry Events & Competitions

Structures for Inclusion 15 Detroit: Call for Presentations

Lawrence Technological University College of Architecture and Design and Design Corps are proud to announce a partnership to present the Structures for Inclusion Conference 15 in Detroit.

“Resilience of Mind, Body and Spirit,” the theme of SFI 15, serves to position the value of SFI within Detroit and other resilient cities. Mind (e.g., attitudes towards the city’s significant challenges); Body (e.g., creative economies such as social entrepreneurship and grassroots physical interventions), and Spirit (e.g., a city’s psyche and sense of itself) will advance the mission of SFI.

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University of Detroit Mercy 2014/2015 Lecture Series

Guest commentary: Listen to the people turn unused land into upbeat plans

This is the first of an occasional series of guest columns about the challenges that Detroit's vacant land poses and strategies to find uses for it.

Jazz, Motown, pop, rock, techno, hip hop -- it goes without saying that Detroit has a rich music history. Our music has always reflected our great city. Perhaps now our great city can reflect a piece of our music. We need a little syncopation.

In music, syncopation means to take weak, less dominant musical notes, and make them stronger. In Detroit, something akin to this process has been happening organically over several decades.

As the vibrant economy of the mid-20th Century has been weakening, new forces of change have emerged -- residents, churches, community associations, nonprofits and others have taken it upon themselves to start shifting us away from the status quo.

Through the process of Detroit Works Project Long Term Planning, we can work together to guide the shift to become a city that works better for our entire community. We can create a syncopated Detroit that will amplify the weaker notes, giving them room to grow, and reinforce a new balanced city that builds on our greatest asset, the people of Detroit.

When it comes to land use, the single family home and the large industrial site were the dominant urban notes of 20th Century Detroit. We already know that with the losses in population and industry, these land uses have given way to vacancy. Surveys suggest that there are approximately 20 to 40 square miles of undesignated open space (i.e., vacant land and buildings) within Detroit's 139 square miles. This range spans almost the size of Manhattan (22.9 square miles) to nearly the size of San Francisco (46.9 square miles).

The question has always been: What do we do with this land? DWP Long Term Planning suggests we need to analyze data, but also look to Detroiters for guidance. For years, they have been creatively using this land like a musician composes a song. They have been taking the weaker notes that exist in our city and making them stronger by transforming them into the sites for community spaces, festivals, art parks, rain water collection, markets and urban gardens and farms. For example, the residents of Brightmoor transformed a one-story single family home into a stage for an outdoor theater.

All land has value -- social value and cultural value, in addition to economic value. Throughout the city of Detroit, people are innovatively using the vacant land and illustrating it as an asset versus a liability. They are creating productive landscapes -- spaces that engage the public while also enabling a diverse economy of products and services.

The result is a new land use where something is made, a service is provided, the environment is healed, jobs are created, and people have a place to play.

 

Detroit Works Project Long Term Planning wants to strategically take these emerging notes and make them stronger and, in turn, build a 21st Century equitable and ecological city for all people -- a richer Detroit for Detroiters.

Dan Pitera is executive director of the Detroit Collaborative Design Center at the University of Detroit Mercy and the Detroit Works Project's Long Term Planning Civic Engagement Lead.

Full Article Compliments of The Detroit Free Press Here: http://www.freep.com/article/20120401/OPINION05/204010483/Guest-commentary-?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|Opinion|s

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