Thursday, April 10, 2008


Went to a Space.City architectural lecture tonight at the Seattle Central Library. The speaker was Vincent James, Minneapolis-based architect and partner of VJAA. (Image above is from a recent book published by Princeton Press.) It was a pretty informative lecture, and reinforced that a lot of what I'm learning in school right now is very conceptually architecturally relevant. *Phew!* His design process looked pretty familiar, so I think I'm getting my money's worth from my tuition. Also, it was nice to see his work since a lot of the examples he showed were very grid-like, but he definitely takes an environmental approach in his work. I completely agreed with his assessment that in many cases, form and style are the driving forces behind a building's design without enough emphasis on the function of spaces or the environmental surroundings.
In addition to the talk, the whole experience was sort of interesting since I left one of my classes early after giving a brief, informal presentation and then drove to the library (lazy) to make sure I wasn't late. I was a little sweaty and nervous still since I really don't like presenting in front of a group, and I also hadn't ever been in the parking garage under the library before. Nothing special, although the elevator is that same bright, neon green that shows up in the rest of the building. At least it was easy to tell where the elevator was, right?
Being trapped in a room full of, I assume, architects wasn't so bad as being trapped in there with all of their glasses. Good thing I didn't wear my black plastic Prada frames today, because I might not have been able to tell myself apart from anyone else! Well, except that I was probably the only person there in a hooded, zip-up sweatshirt. Whatever. I'm a student. I paid the same ten bucks for a ticket as everyone else! It was just strange to be at a lecture that also felt rather like a cocktail party. Not like everyone was dressy, but most everyone was DESIGNY.
Also, I found out yesterday that I did get a departmental scholarship, and that I was also one of the eight people (out of forty-three awards) who was named a Kreielsheimer Scholar. This is significant for two reasons: 1) It means I get a bigger award; and 2) It embodied the closest I can get at this point to my high-school dream of winning the Kreielsheimer Scholarship. The "K" Foundation used to offer one full-ride scholarship to Cornish annually back when I was in high school, but I was chicken and never even applied for that, let alone to Cornish. So, now that the "K" Foundation is mostly defunct (it is now something like the Kreielsheimer Residual Fund Foundation since they met their goal already of giving away a bunch of money within a certain timeline) this is the best I can do on that front. And I did it. Word up.

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