Thesis Prep Symposium (April 6, 2011)



Elena Manferdini opens the symposium and introduces guest critic Sanford Kwinter, and a panel consisting of Jeffrey Kipnis, Hernan Diaz Alonso, and Wes Jones. She outlines the role of thesis at SCI-Arc, stressing the responsibility of students to seriously investigate the architectural implications of their topics.

The panel discusses qualities exhibited by a good thesis, noting a balance between innovative ideas and effective communication. Wes Jones inquires about the difference between designers and architects. While conceding the importance of consulting with peers, the panel cautions against being over-influenced by others, and the sameness that results.

Diaz Alonso discusses the relevance of student theses within contemporary architectural practice. The panel discusses the change in topics over the last decade. They discuss the dangers of monoculture and complacency.

The panelists talk about Sanford Kwinter’s lecture the previous night. They warn against the codification of architectural techniques.

The panelists talk about representational tools and their ability to either stagnate or advance the paradigms of architecture. The panelists contrast architectural skills with representational “magic tricks.”

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