MULTIHYPHENATE: Sean Canty, Zeina Koreitem, and John May introduce Harvard Design Magazine #51

Event Description:

Sean Canty, Zeina Koreitem, and John May will discuss the ideas and concerns that animated their editorial vision for Harvard Design Magazine #51: Multihyphenate, and its relationship to their co-curated exhibition, Multihyphenation, on view in the Druker Design Gallery (August 30 – October 9, 2023). While launched in tandem with one another, the magazine and the exhibition aim to explore the notion of multihyphenation in various fields of cultural production from different vantage points. Their conversation will highlight the similarities and differences between these two formats—one printed, the other experiential—as well as the possible misconceptions that might arise from having brought multihyphenation, past and present, into sharp focus.

“In a general sense, multihyphenation simply means a conscious diversification of one’s productive output within the realms of intellectual and material culture. In practice, the situation is far more complex. When done exceptionally well, multihyphenation involves a continual and coordinated distribution of one’s mental and manual labor across various formats, forums, and material systems. It demands a patient and careful choreographing of the tangencies, adjacencies, sympathies, tensions, and divisions within an entire “body of work”1 (past, present, and imagined future)—this, by means of an incessant admixture of speculation, experimentation, production, and reflection. Multihyphenation, knowingly and intentionally, distributes productive energy according to the carrying capacities of distinct media formats: spoken, written, imaged, constructed, performed, etc. It is, in other words, a lived and living media theory. “

– John May, “How to Disintegrate Completely (…but Always be Found),” Harvard Design Magazine #51


Sean Canty is assistant professor of architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. In 2017, he founded Studio Sean Canty, an architectural practice that introduces novel geometries and materials to enrich the spaces of everyday life. He also cofounded Office III, an architectural collective. Canty received a fellowship from the Richard Rogers Fellowship and was a finalist in the Civitella Ranieri Architecture Prize competition, among others. His work has been exhibited at MoMA and A83 Gallery, New York. He has held teaching appointments at the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, New York; University of California, Berkeley; and California College of the Arts. Canty received an MArch from the Harvard Graduate School of Design and a BArch from California College of the Arts. He previously worked in the offices of Architecture Research Office and IwamotoScott Architecture.

Zeina Koreitem is founding partner with John May of MILLIØNS, a Los Angeles–based architecture practice. She is design faculty at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) in Los Angeles. Koreitem previously held positions at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, the University of Toronto, and the University of Southern California School of Architecture. In addition, Koreitem previously worked for the offices of Dominique Perrault Architecture in Paris and RCR Arquitectes in Olot, Spain.

John May is founding partner with Zeina Koreitem of MILLIØNS, a Los Angeles–based architecture practice. He is associate professor of architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and author of Signal. Image. Architecture: Everything is Already an Image (Columbia University Press, 2019).

00:00 Introduction by Ken Stewart
13:03 Remarks by John May
23:59 Remarks by Sean Canty
28:29 Remarks by Zeina Koreitem
33:26 Discussion and Q+A



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