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2012 Convention Updates
The Texas Society of Architects is committed to delivering the best possible opportunities for members and the design community at its 73rd Annual Convention and Design Expo in Austin, Oct. 18-20. Texas Architects has recently added two new Continuing Education sessions and a schedule update to the convention program to help attendees get the most out of their convention experience. View those updates here.
Light Craft: Art and Architecture Merge at Rice
Anchoring the western end of Rice University's main quad in Houston, James Turrell's new 118-foot-square Skyspace emerges from the earth in front of the monolithic Shepherd School of Music. “This is architecture that light and space makes,” explains the artist. When the sun illuminates the atmosphere, you can't see through it to view the stars that are there, he points out. “Light not only reveals, it also obscures—so you can actually build a space with it. I use light and architecture in that way: to limit space and to reveal it, either way.”
How 99% Invisible is Changing Public Radio
"Covering design on the radio can be a challenge for obvious reasons, but being audio-only is usually a constraint that works in my favor," says Roman Mars. Mars is the creator and host of the hugely inventive podcast 99% Invisible, which treats the design of everyday things like a forensic science. In each episode, Mars (keynote speaker for 2012 Texas Architects Convention) highlights some nearly invisible design process that you had no idea was incredibly interesting and then tells you why it is.
Texas Governor's Mansion Finally Restored
Governor Rick Perry announced on Thursday that the 156- year-old Texas Governor’s Mansion has been fully restored. In October 2007, the mansion underwent deferred maintenance to replace plumbing and electrical systems, install indoor fire sprinklers, and improve handicap accessibility. On June 8, 2008, an unidentified arsonist threw a Molotov cocktail on the front porch causing catastrophic damage. The Governor's Mansion is slated as one of the tours (sold-out) during the Texas Society of Architects October Convention in Austin.
AIA Dallas Women in Architecture Competition
The AIA Dallas Women in Architecture Committee announces its 2nd Annual Express Yourself Competition as an opportunity for women architects and designers in Texas to showcase their art and design work. Winners in three categories will be formally announced the weekend of the Texas Architects Convention n Austin, Oct. 18-20. Deadline to register for the competition is August 8. Submission deadline is Sept. 4.
99% Invisible: The Speed of Light for Building Pyramids
This episode of 99% Invisible, produced byTexas Architects 2012 convention keynote speaker Roman Mars, features the research of Steve Burrows CBE, who spent several weeks in Egypt studying the pyramids through the eyes of a modern day structural engineer. The result presented fascinating insights into the design of the pyramids and offers some lessons in how we may think about sustainability through longevity in modern architecture.
Rethinking Historic Buildings through a Green Lens
The construction and operation of buildings accounts for almost 50% of the U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Reusing what we have – buildings, landscapes, communities – is the best way is the best way to reduce these emissions and to make the biggest impact in controlling climate change. Attend the Texas Architects Convention in October and hear noted architect, planner, and historian Barbara Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP, share her experience and work developing national sustainability policies, integrating cultural and preservation metrics into the LEED rating systems, and discussing past and current sustainable preservation projects.
New Federal Courthouse Hard-Hat Tour
Designed by Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, the new U.S. Courthouse in Austin occupies a full city block directly west of Republic Square Park. Take advantage of a rare opportunity to see the new courthouse just before occupancy by registering to attend the Texas Society of Architects Annual Convention and Design Expo, Oct. 18-20, at the Austin Convention Center. Weeks after this hard-hat tour, the courthouse will be locked down by security, and no one else will have the same freedom to experience the courthouse’s beautifully crafted interiors.
Registration Opens July 11 for Texas Architects Convention
Online registration is open for the Texas Society of Architects Convention and Design Expo, October 18-20, in Austin. This year, the convention’s theme is “Influence.” Keynote speakers are Robert Hammond, co-founder and co-executive director of Friends of the High Line – a public park built above an abandoned, elevated rail line in New York — and Roman Mars, award-winning host and radio producer of 99% Invisible.
Designed to Connect: LinkedIn for Architects
Popular social media outlets, such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, all have their uses. Of the three, LinkedIn has retained an air of professionalism and restraint compared with the more informal information-sharing that takes place among “friends” and “followers” on Facebook and Twitter. Yet, LinkedIn manages to produce a lot of noise – a consistent hum. So how can we, as architectural professionals, effectively communicate a message about architecture that rises above that hum?
Think twice before you speak. How often have those words resounded in your head before you launch into a presentation, lecture, conversation, or rebuttal? Words, tone, and inflection are our tools for influencing others with our passion and knowledge of architecture. What we say is an opportunity to educate opinions as to the importance of the built environment on a community’s vitality and well being.
Call for Volunteer Leaders
The Texas Society of Architects invites its members to contribute to the profession through volunteer service. The 2012 Nominating Committee is seeking diverse candidates for the open 2013 leadership positions—officers and at-large directors to serve on the Texas Society of Architects Board of Directors.
KUT Podcast: The Legacy of John Saunders Chase
On this edition of KUT radio's "In Black America," producer/host John L. Hanson Jr. speaks with the late John Saunders Chase, the first African American graduate of The University of Texas at Austin and the first African American President of The Texas Exes. Chase was a pioneering architect who broke barriers in Texas and elsewhere.
AIA 2012 Institute Update: The Road Ahead
In the May 19 AIA Business Meeting at the AIA Convention in Washington, D.C, EVP/Chief Executive Officer Robert Ivy, FAIA, began his presentation with the simple idea that now is a time of profound change within the Institute and beyond, as evidenced by the ambitious repositioning effort the AIA announced in April, the demographic transitions that will soon remake the AIA’s membership base, and the still-struggling economy that has left architects unmoored in an unstable financial climate for the last few years.
99% Invisible: Design for Airports
In this episode of the radio program 99% Invisible, host and producer Roman Mars discusses airport design with Allison Arieff of the New York Times. Using the new T2 terminal at SFO as an example, Arieff talks through some of the considerations that go into designing an airport terminal, how the priorities have changed since 9/11, and how architects struggle to keep pace with ever-changing technology.
Texas Firms among AIA COTE Award Winners
On April 19, the American Institute of Architects’ Committee on the Environment (AIA–COTE) announced its Top Ten projects for 2012. This year’s batch of winners highlight community ties, social equity, and attentiveness to water issues. One Texas firm and three national/international firms with offices in Texas are among the winners.
Texas Architects Announces 2012 Keynote Speakers
The Texas Society of Architects 2012 Annual Convention and Design Expo, October 18-20, in Austin, presents two distinguished keynote speakers who will examine the role of design in the context of the convention’s theme "Influence."
Live First, Work Second: Inside the Head of the Next Generation
With advancements in technology and a new generation of creatives juggling busy personal and professional lives, Rebecca Ryan of Next Generation Consulting discusses how organizations and institutions can bridge generation gaps to invigorate and improve leadership, and spearhead intelligent dialogue about creativity, innovation, and community development. A keynote speaker at the Texas Architects 2011 Convention in Dallas, Ryan was interviewed by architect Jeramie Rittiluechai, AIA, before giving an address to a standing-room only crowd. Listen to a podcast of the interview here.
Influence and Impact
Since the February issue of Checkset, the Architecture Billings Index has produced four consecutive positive months; the unemployment rate in Texas is hovering just above seven percent; and the first Texas Society of Architects design symposium, "Architecture in the Hinterlands," has proved to be a phenomenal success. All are indications of improving times ahead for our profession.
June 2012 Member News
June member news includes newly licensed architects, new architect members, new associate members, and firm news.
Q & A with AIA Houston President Perry Seeberger
Texas Society of Architects member Perry Seeberger, AIA, who currently serves as president of AIA Houston, recently spoke with The Houston Chronicle about local architecture. Excerpts from the Q & A were published on Chron.com and cover topics such as the effect of the recession on architecture firms to the impact of energy-efficient projects on the city.
2012: The New Year
An expression used without sufficient consideration is "welcoming in a new year." The New Year does bring a new start of metrics. We restart the annual counters for withholding tax, utilization rates, revenue projections, and seemingly endless payments of one kind of insurance or another. The New Year, for you perhaps, includes new responsibilities, a new position, or (considering) new resolutions.
Annual Convention: Evolution and Influence
On August 1,1995, Gayle Pickering joined the staff of the Texas Society of Architects and went to Dallas the next day to meet with the 1995 Convention Committee who was planning an early November event.
Texas Makes Top Ten List of Greenest States
On Jan. 19, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) released its 2011 list of top 10 states for LEED-certified commercial and institutional green buildings per capita, based on the U.S. 2010 Census information. The District of Columbia leads the nation, with Colorado being the leading state, and Texas among nine other states.
Profession's Future Rests on Opportunities for Young Professionals
"As long as I can stay employed, I will stay in the profession."
This was a response to a recent online survey that asked emerging architects in the state of Texas: "Do you see yourself continuing on in this profession, or are you considering a career change?"
Demolition Looms for Architectural Gem in Fort Worth
The 8,400-sf Fort Worth residence known as the Andrew Fuller House (1953), designed by modernist A. Quincy Jones, may be doomed to a wrecking ball. The city has issued a demolition permit to the Frost Bank trust department. The house does not carry a historic designation, which would trigger measures to safeguard it from demolition.
Videos Highlight Diversity of State's Award-Winning Architecture
The 12 winners of 2011 Texas Architects Design Awards, featured in this video gallery, represent the diversity of our State's architectural profession and the increasing role that architects from Texas play in the globalized forum of design.
What Makes a Building an Icon?
In the Nov/Dec Texas Architect article "Dance Partner," Geoffrey Brune, FAIA, explores what makes a building an icon, highlighting the Houston Ballet Center for Dance as an example.
With Launch of New Website, Texas Architects Unveils New Brand
“As the voice for Texas architecture, our role is to elevate the general public’s aspirations for the built environment. More than ever, our society needs safe, beautiful, and sustainable environments. Our re-purposed web presence is aimed toward stirring the imagination and making that case in increasingly expanding ways,” says President Dan Hart, AIA, PE.
Speck: Architecture Influences Lifestyle
An October 27 Austin Business Journal interview with Larry Speck, FAIA, principal at Page Southerland Page and Texas Architects Board member, explores the topic of how architecture influences lifestyle.
Fountain Place Featured in The Shape of Texas Podcast
Fountain Place, which received a 2011 Texas Architects Design Award, is featured in this podcast from the award-winning radio program The Shape of Texas. The podcast also includes a number of episodes on the following projects in Dallas: Reunion Tower, Adolphus Hotel, DART Rail Stations, Turtle Creek, Victory Park, Sixth Floor Museum, Thanksgiving Square, Highland Park Village, and TI Semiconductor Building.
Office Closed as Society Convenes in Dallas for 72nd Convention
The Texas Society of Architects office at 500 Chicon is closed Wednesday, Oct. 26, through Monday, Oct. 31, for the Society's 72nd Annual Convention and Design Products & Ideas Expo in Dallas, Oct. 27-29. John Maeda, president of the Rhode Island School of Design, and Rebecca Ryan, of Next Generation Consulting, are keynote presenters.
Promoting Community Identity
Richter Architects (Corpus Christi) has been locally and nationally recognized for its sensible and sensitive architecture. The firm's work explores the nature of culture, context, and place – promoting the development of local character and community identity.
Walter Humann Receives Cornerstone Award
In recognition of outstanding contributions that enhance the quality of life by elevating architecture and the arts, promoting the value of community, or preserving the natural environment, Walter J. Humann is the recipient of the 2011 Texas Architects Cornerstone Award.
Fountain Place Wins 25-Year Award
Since its completion in 1986, Fountain Place in downtown Dallas has been praised for both the geometrical precision of its 60-story tower clad in green glass and the extraordinary six-acre urban space that unfurls at its base. Originally known as the Allied Bank Tower at Fountain Place and designed by I.M. Pei and Partners with landscape architect Dan Kiley.