Lecture date: 2013-11-05
This lecture will explore architecture’s nervous encounter with liquids. Our buildings, like ourselves, are filled with pipes. Water, gas, electricity, and information flow inside walls, floor and ceilings, crisscrossing basements and running across rooftops. Yet these tubes are rarely allowed to enter the space. No evidence of flow is allowed. But the ever expanding repressed world of pipes always has its leaks, blockages and occasional overflows. The building and the discipline occasionally get covered in what was meant to be excluded. There is an astonishing architecture of pipes, a radical liquid architecture.
Mark Wigley is Dean of Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation. The author of The Architecture of Deconstruction: Derrida's Haunt (1993), White Walls, Designer Dresses: The Fashioning of Modern Architecture (1995; both MIT Press), and Constant's New Babylon: The Hyper-Architecture of Desire (010 Publishers, 1998), he coedited, with Catherine de Zegher, The Activist Drawing: Retracing Situationist Architectures from Constant's New Babylon to Beyond,(MIT Press, 2001). He has curated exhibitions at the MoMA in New York, the Witte de With in Rotterdam, The Drawing Center in New York, and the CCA in Montreal.
Lecture date: 1997-11-03
Architects make sketches - or so we are told. Our discourse endlessly circles around a few twitchy lines. Seemingly fragile drawings turn out to be extraordinarily resilient and infinitely strange. Using the work of Enric Miralles as a starting point, Mark Wigley rethinks the role of the sketch in the electronic age.
Wrigley is the author of The Architecture of Deconstruction: Derridas Haunt; White Walls, Designer Dresses: The Fashioning of Modern Architecture; and Constants New Babylon. In 1988 he co-curated - with Philip Johnson - the influential Deconstructivist Architecture exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. From 1987 to 1999 he taught at Princeton University, where he became director of Graduate Studies in 1997. In 2003 he succeeded Bernard Tschumi as Dean of Columbia Universitys Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation.
Lecture date: 2000-12-11
The 'Psychoanalysis and Space' conference, chaired by Mark Cousins, is based upon the premise that many conditions of spatial experience are unconscious, and at the same time the unconscious may often be described in terms of spatial fantasies. The aim is to initiate discussion of the possibilities of psychoanalytic theory making a systematic contribution to the analysis of spatial relationships and architecture. This is the first time that this issue - increasingly prominent within architectural theory and criticism - has been addressed in a systematic form.
Mark Wigley - The Historian on the couch
Lecture date: 1996-03-20
Reflecting on the complex relationships that emerge from the repression and recurrence of colour in the work of Le Corbusier and Bruno Taut, Mark Wigley opens up a new understanding of the historical avant-garde by exploring the most obvious but least discussed feature of modern architecture: white walls. Mark Wigley, formerly Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies at Princeton, is Dean of Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University. He is the author of several books including White Walls, Designer Dresses: The Fashioning of Modern Architecture and The Architecture of Deconstruction: Derrida's Haunt.
NB: Slides are difficult to see. Lecture cuts out at start of Q & A.
Lecture date: 2011-03-11
Participants: Patrik Schumacher, Jeff Kipnis, Lars Spuybroek, Charles Jencks, Eric Owen Moss, Wolf D Prix, Alejandro Zaera Polo, Mark Wigley, Marc Cousins, Brett Steele, Zaha Hadid
Organised by Patrik Schumacher
The debate will be guided by the issues raised in Patrik Schumacher's book The Autopoiesis of Architecture, which is being published by Wiley. Volume 1 was launched at the AA on 7 December 2010; Volume 2 will come out in autumn 2011. The purpose of the book is to give leadership to the discipline. It presents a systematic treatise on architecture, a unified theory constructed on the basis of a comprehensive discourse analysis of the discipline, rationally reconstructed as autopoietic system of communications, within the framework of Niklas Luhmann’s social systems theory.
The theory of architectural autopoiesis constructs a unified theoretical system that integrates many partial theories. The following theories are presented in Volume 1: theories of architectural theory; of architecture’s historical emergence; of the discipline’s self- demarcation; of the avant-garde; of the form-function aesthetic theory; of style(s), design media theory; and of architecture’s societal function. (Volume 2 continues with theories of architecture’s task articulated into an organisational, a phenomenological, and a semiological dimension; design process theory; of architecture’s relevant societal environment; of architecture’s relationship to politics; of architectural self-description. Volume two ends with a comprehensive argument for parametricism as unified, epochal style for the 21st century.)
Guests/speakers might pick one of following topics/questions (or bring anything else into the debate):
A fundamental question of ethos/ideology/discursive culture: Should we – the participants/protagonists of architecture – commit/submit ourselves to a collective debate arguing about the direction in which architecture should progress?
Is all relevant architecture globally relevant architecture, i.e. world architecture?
In which way is architecture autonomous? Is architecture one of the great autopoietic function systems of society?
Demarcating architecture: Does architecture/design constitute a sui generis discursive field and domain of expertise distinct from art, engineering and science?
The raison d’etre of architecture: Does architecture have a specific role or function to fulfil within society?
Does architecture have a stable discursive core identity? Which are the permanent and which the variable communication structures of architecture?
Can architecture be defined via its lead distinction of form vs function?
Is the distinction between avant-garde and mainstream a useful schema to analyse what goes on in architecture?
What is the role of architectural theory? Can there be architecture without theory?
Is the category of beauty still valid within architecture? What is the role and raison d’etre of aesthetic values?
What is the significance and import of the evolving design media?
Is the category of style(s) still valid (or even necessary) within architecture?
Does it make sense to propose a comprehensive, unified theory of architecture in the form of an elaborate theoretical system?
These are topics that might be raised by any of the speakers, or these might be questions with which the speakers might be confronted by the host. The idea here is to share a set of questions without necessarily allocating or selecting questions.
Lecture date: 2011-01-13
I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that won't work' -Thomas Edison
In 2011 the world is adrift in a world of accelerating forms of failure. Global economies are mired in the financial consequences of widespread banking failure. Failed political regimes and failing foreign policies have led dozens of countries into lengthy wars, being fought across the developed and emerging world. The failure of 20th-century business, design and planning models, including multiple examples within the architectural profession, are creating the conditions around which new strategies, projects and forms of practise are emerging.
Architectural histories and theories have forever focused on narratives of individual, stylistic or intellectual, cultural success. Architects have long sought to escape failure of all kinds – as Mies van der Rohe was once quoted as saying late in his career, 'I had to flee to the new world to escape the failures of my youth – what the old world made impossible for me to accomplish there'. The overwhelming part of an architect's working life is spent working with failure: for every project realised, dozens fail to reach their conclusion. All movements and styles are eventually superseded by their successors. Hundreds of entries in a design competition are losers, while a single proposal is selected and judged the winner.
Tonight's conversation by Mark Wigley and Brett Steele, the latest of a series of public conversations begun in 2008, will embrace an architecture of failure. The conversation will be moderated by Shumon Basar, Head of AACP, the curatorial practices group of the AA School of Architecture.
Mark Wigley, Dean, Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation has written extensively on the theory and practice of architecture. His books include Constant’s New Babylon: The Hyper-Architecture of Desire (1998) and White Walls, Designer Dresses: The Fashioning of Modern Architecture (1995). He co-edited The Activist Drawing: Retracing Situationalist Architectures from Constant’s New Babylon to Beyond (2001). Wigley has served as curator at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Drawing Center, New York; Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal; and Witte de With Museum, Rotterdam.
Lecture date: 2011-01-14
Roundtable with Jeffrey Inaba, Mark Wigley, Brett Steele and guests including Graham Caine, Peter Crump, David Greene, Charles Holland and Ines Weizman
'If you remember the 60's, you weren't there'
Grace Slick, Jefferson Airplane
This afternoon event includes a roundtable discussion led by Jeffrey Inaba, Features Editor of VOLUME, an independent quarterly for architecture. Issue 24 of the journal, published in autumn 2010, examines current interests and recent histories of counterculture: in architecture, the environment, politics, art and culture. The 1960's counter-cultural roots of the hippie generation are now mainstream, and alternative values of 40 years ago can now be seen to guide the world of technology. At first glance, what appears prescient about the 1960's when looking at current US culture is the preoccupation with computer technology, the natural environment and alternative forms of community; but today each is disconnected from the radical political action and oppositional ideologies of the earlier era. Discuss.
This afternoon's roundtable conversation will include Jeffrey Inaba, Mark Wigley and others, and will be moderated by Brett Steele.
Jeffrey Inaba is director of the Columbia Laboratory for Architectural Broadcasting (C-Lab), in Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. This research unit studies urban and architecture issues of public consequence. C-Lab experiments with forms of architectural communication that it presents through various outlets including Volume magazine and online, print, and exhibition venues. Inaba is features editor at Volume and the author of World of Giving (Lars Muller, 2010).
Friday, April 18, 2014
Wood Auditorium, Avery Hall
2000+: The Urgencies of Architectural Theory
Lucia Allais, Princeton University School of Architecture
Beatriz Colomina, Princeton University School of Architecture
Mark Cousins, Architectural Association
Arindam Dutta, MIT Architecture
Keller Easterling, Yale School of Architecture
John Harwood, Oberlin College
Catherine Ingraham, Pratt Institute
Mark Jarzombek, MIT Architecture
Mari Lending, Oslo Centre for Critical Architectural Studies
Spyros Papapetros, Princeton School of Architecture
Felicity Scott, Columbia University GSAPP
Pelin Tan, Faculty of Architecture, Mardin Artuklu University
Bernard Tschumi, Columbia University GSAPP
Eyal Weizman, Goldsmiths, University of London
Mark Wigley, Columbia University GSAPP
Mabel Wilson, Columbia University GSAPP
10:15--11:45: Session A
11:45--1:15 Session B
2:15--3:45: Session C
3:45--5:30: Session D
5:45--7:15: Session E
Thursday, August 8, 2013
The tenth in a series of conversations between Peter Eisenman and Mark Wigley
With introduction by Enrique Walker
Organized by The Temple Hoyne Buell Center for the Study of American Architecture
In February 2017, the CCA hosted an afternoon of discussion in Montreal on the work of Cedric Price. Scholars were invited to present their individual motivations and methodologies for researching the architect's key projects. In this presentation, Mark Wigley discusses the Fun Palace.
En février 2017, le CCA a organisé un après-midi de discussion sur les travaux de Cedric Price. Des spécialistes ont été invité à expliquer ce qui les motive à explorer les principaux projets de Price et à présenter les méthodologies qu’ils utilisent. Dans cette conférence, Mark Wigley aborde le Fun Palace.