In order to best serve of members of the SAHGB, this page will be frequently updated with links to conferences, publications, and events that may be of interest.*
If you have an opportunity that you think will be of interest to the SAHGB, please email the SAHGB's Web Officer, Danielle Willkens.
*The opportunities and organisations listed below are not affiliated with the SAHGB, but have been chosen for listing here because they may be of interest to visitors to this site.
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European Architectural History Network (EAHN) Thematic Conference: "The Tools of the Architect"
Conference: November 22-24, 2017 in Delft and Rotterdam, Netherlands
CfP due: June 15
The European Architectural History Network (EAHN) is pleased to announce the EAHN’s fifth thematic conference The Tools of the Architect, to be held at Delft University of Technology and Het Nieuwe Instituut HNI (Delft and Rotterdam, The Netherlands) on 22 – 24 November 2017.
Architects have for their activities of drawing, writing and building always depended upon the potential of particular tools –ranging from practical instruments such as straight edges, French curves, compasses, rulers and pencils to conceptual tools such as working drawings, collages, photographic surveys, infographics, diagrams, casts and mass models.
As technologies advanced the toolbox of architects has changed and expanded. Today architects have an extraordinary array of sophisticated tools at their disposal but also rely on many of same tools as their 18th and 19th century peers. Working drawings, pencils and tracing paper continue to appear in the designer’s studio while their role and potential is being redefined.
Time and time again, architects have engaged with new tools. The quest to find the most appropriate and adequate tools to articulate, test and communicate design ideas has never ended, and in this pursuit architects have appropriated tools from other disciplines, such as art, historiography, sociology, philosophy, computer sciences and engineering. Out of this perspective the tools of the architect have become a field of intense exploration of the encounter of architecture with other disciplinary perspectives.
Inventions and innovations of tools throughout history have not only provided better answers to questions of analyzing and representing the built environment, but they have also pointed to new ways of conceiving and intervening. Ellipsographs made it possible to precisely draw an elliptical space in the 19th century and computer-aided drafting software has allowed for a new conception and construction of complex geometries in the 20th and 21st century. New tools have continuously affected the imagination, character and qualities of architectural projects.
This conference wants to focus on the changing practical and conceptual tools of the architect and their effect on the logos and praxis of architecture. The conference will be structured along three thematic lines:
1. The Instruments of the Architect (i.e. the apparata and equipment of the architect)
2. The Tools of Analysis (i.e. the devices to study architecture and the built environment in general)
3. The Tools of Intervention (i.e. the devices to intervene in the built environment)
We welcome papers that consider the tools of the architect from this threefold perspective. Papers should be based on well-documented research that is primarily analytical and interpretative rather than descriptive in nature.
EAHN journal Architectural Histories
Call for submissions due: June 15, 2017
Architectural Histories invites paper abstracts for a special themed issue
on Resilience and Recovery in architectural history and historiography.
We live today in a world of rapid change. These changes take form in
technological innovations, socio-economic shifts, political uncertainties,
cultural developments, and climatic and ecological divergence. The
resulting storms of excitement, fear and anxiety have stimulated the
development of new constructs in the social and applied sciences, notably
the concept of resilience. Developed first in relation to biological and
ecological systems, resilience is generally understood as the ability of
something or someone to return to a stable state from an anomalous one. On
a more subtle level, “resilience” implies processes of negotiation,
absorption, and adaptation in response to significant change. Within
architectural history, recent research on resilience has focused on the
ecological and environmental issues, with specific attention to the
development of building in response to present and future changes. Less
has been written about the social and cultural dimensions of the change in
respect to architectural production – how constructions have adapted to
change in the past, and the ways in which these changes have been
theorized and presented in history.
The EAHN journal Architectural Histories seeks to expand the discourse on
resilience in architecture, and the correlative idea of recovery. Architectural Histories invites abstracts for articles that explore these ideas and concepts in relation to any period, epoch or region of architecture.
Submission deadline: 15 June 2017
Authors will receive notification by 25 June 2017
Deadline for final articles: 1 January 2018
All material should be submitted to the editor
Society of Architectural Historians (SAH) 2018 Annual International Conference
Conference: April 18-22, 2018 in Saint Paul, Minnesota
CfP due: June 15, pm CDT
The Society of Architectural Historians is now accepting abstracts for its 71st Annual International Conference in Saint Paul, MN, April 18–22. Please submit an abstract no later than 5:00 p.m. CDT on June 15, 2017, to one of the 45 thematic sessions, the Graduate Student Lightning Talks or the open sessions. The thematic sessions have been selected to cover topics across all time periods and architectural styles. SAH encourages submissions from architectural, landscape, and urban historians; museum curators; preservationists; independent scholars; architects; scholars in related fields; and members of SAH chapters and partner organizations. Thematic sessions and Graduate Student Lightning Talks are listed below. Please note that those submitting papers for the Graduate Student Lightning Talks must be graduate students at the time the talk is being delivered (April 18–22, 2017). Open sessions are available for those whose research does not match any of the themed sessions. Instructions and deadlines for submitting to themed sessions and open sessions are the same. For full submission guidelines and available session themes, please read the Call for Papers.
Please note that the SAHGB will have a dedicated session:
The Audience for Architectural History in the 21st Century
In 1946, BBC listeners were first introduced to Nikolaus Pevsner’s broadcasts on art and architecture. Not only did he translate primarily visual subjects into auditory discourse, he also helped introduce architectural history to an audience much wider than a purely academic one, encouraging listeners to explore their hometowns with a new visual curiosity. Lessons in architectural history can now be found not only in lecture halls and printed media, but also in museums, at heritage tourism sites, and online. Architectural history research pervades popular culture: viewers of The Man in the High Castle series saw a digital manifestation of Albert Speer’s Berlin, and video games allow players to walk through the illusory cityscapes of Piranesi, the Futurists, and even Archigram.
This session will address a number of questions. Who is our audience when we write architectural history in the 21st century, and with today’s wider range of media, what methodologies should we use to engage this audience? In the academy, who are our students, and what departments do we serve? What role does architectural history play in professional architectural programs at undergraduate and postgraduate levels? In practice, how do we use new digital documentation technologies effectively and what are the viable alternatives for print-based research dissemination? What of the non-academic audience and of research being done by amateurs, disseminated through local groups? Finally, how can we inspire life-long learning, engagement, and advocacy rather than a bucket-list approach to architectural exploration?
This session aspires to create a panel of presenters from different perspectives: proposals are welcome from architectural historians within the academy, private practice, and the non-profit sector, as well as from those in conservation, preservation, museum studies, and the visualization of the built environment.
Session Chairs: Danielle Willkens, Auburn University, and Jonathan Kewley, Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission for England
Architecture, Citizenship, Space: British Architecture from the 1920s to the 1970s
Oxford Brookes University, Headington Campus, Gipsy Lane, Oxford
How did individuals and groups concerned with architecture and the built environment respond to, and seek to shape, the challenges and opportunities of twentieth-century life? Engaging with themes such as democracy, citizenship, leisure, culture and new subjectivities, and showcasing scholars at the forefront of emerging methodological approaches to architectural history, this conference considers how key aspects of British modernity informed architectural form and space between the 1920s and the 1970s.
The conference theme takes as its starting point the words of Jennie Lee, the newly appointed Minister for the Arts, who, in 1965, spoke of her wish for a Britain that was ‘gayer and more cultivated.’ Lee’s comment accompanied a substantial increase in state funding for the Arts, distributed via quangos such as the Arts Council and the Council for Industrial Design, and addressed a wider context in which certain forms of cultural and recreational activities – and the architectural settings for them – were deemed to have particular value. The idea was especially marked among the political left but represented a consensus: Labour’s 1959 manifesto was entitled Leisure for Living, while the Conservatives that same year published The Challenge of Leisure. Such questions seemed particularly significant given the widespread belief that technological developments would soon result in a shorter working week and an increase in leisure time. In these circumstances, communal high-cultural, educational and sporting activities were possible counterweights to individualism, materialism, and (a perceived) malign American influence.
The mid-century concern with culture, leisure and new forms of space had its roots in nineteenth-century ideas of ‘improvement’, particularly as re-worked and refined in the inter-war decades, and took place within a wider context in which certain approaches to design and cultural production were favoured. We can thus distinguish a clear attempt to ‘re-form’ Britain in a new, modern (‘cultured’) image which drew in part on apparently sophisticated European practice but which, as the Architectural Review’s ‘Townscape’ campaigns shows, also drew on consciously ‘British,’ or at least ‘English’ precedents. There was, in effect, an expert-led, ‘technocratic’ approach to modernity, in which the British would be steered in a particular direction through design, architecture and urbanism, and by a range of individuals and groups including not only national and local authorities, but also voluntary organisations and societies. The city emerged as a particular site of debate, with architect-planners creating lively images of a new communal urbanity in terms which paralleled the wider stress on community and leisure. Not only would the result be a transformed citizenry, but also a new image of Britain. Furthermore, as exhibitions such as ‘Britain Can Make It’ (1946) demonstrated, the agenda was also to ensure Britain’s prominence on the world stage.
This conference explores how these themes were manifested in architectural discourse, form and space. Its concern is architectural production in the widest sense, encompassing not only completed buildings and unbuilt projects but also texts and the media. The conference addresses an emerging ‘historical turn’ in twentieth-century British architectural history away from primarily formalist accounts of style to something akin to the deeper-rooted, more sophisticated histories of modern art and literature. This new architectural history is rooted in the archive and asks how cultural production functioned as a vehicle through which to explore such ideas as modernity, identity and community. In essence, architecture is conceived as a commentary on these ideas, whether by embracing or resisting them.
The conference, which is supported by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, and convened by Elizabeth Darling and Alistair Fair, takes place across 2 days in the John Henry Brookes Building on the Headington Campus of Oxford Brookes University. The conference fee is £30, and includes lunch and refreshments. Any queries should be addressed to Elizabeth Darling (email@example.com)
Day One: 15th June 2017
10.30 Arrival and coffee
11.00 Welcome – conference chair, Dr Elizabeth Darling
11.15 Session 1: The Pivotal Decades: Re-thinking Architecture and Nationhood 1918-1939. Theme: This session explores the re-evaluation of the purpose and nature of architecture as Britain entered full democracy. It will consider the development of new idioms of space and form to accommodate this shift.
Chair: Professor Elizabeth McKellar (Open University)
2.00 Session 2: Educating the Nation after 1945.
Theme: A modern nation required an educated citizenry. Kickstarted by the Education Act of 1944, and a baby boom, the post-war years saw a dramatic expansion in educational building.
Chair: Professor Mark Swenarton (University of Liverpool)
4.30 Roundtable & Discussion: Architecture, Citizenship, Space – beyond the Academy: Municipal Dreams, Manchester Modernist Society, Verity-Jane Keefe (The Mobile Museum).
5.45 Close – Reception
9.15 Session 3: Where and How to Live
Theme: By 1939 a consensus had emerged that British cities were inadequate to the task of accommodating modern life. Architects and architectural students increasingly sought to promote new models of urban form and dwelling.
Chair: Professor John Gold (Oxford Brookes University)
11.15 Session 4: Culture and Democracy
Theme: The proper use of leisure was a key theme in post-war Britain, with both Labour and Conservative administrations turning their attention to the subject.
Chair: Dr Robert Proctor (University of Bath)
Cornerstone Architectural Scholars is an email group (i.e., listserv) for architectural scholars that might be of interest to members. The group disseminates news about upcoming conferences, especially calls for papers, but it also publicizes exhibitions, fellowships and other events or news. Cornerstone is not meant for discussions, debates, or chats, but simply for communicating useful information. The volume of messages is fairly light, about three or four per week. The group's focus is mainly on architectural scholarship--spanning history, theory, urbanism, sustainability, technology, landscape, morphology, etc.--rather than architectural practice or design.
Cornerstone currently has about 320 members, most of whom are architecture faculty or doctoral students. There is absolutely no obligation involved in being a Cornerstone member--it only means that one receives the group messages by email. One can join or leave the group at any time. Cornerstone works through the Google Groups system, and there are no problems with spam. Anyone interested in joining Cornerstone can contact Matthew Heins.
Postgraduate Certificate in Architectural History
University of Oxford, Department of Continuing Education
The course is directed by Dr Paul Barnwell, Director of Studies in the Historic Environment and runs over part-time for 12 months. The course covers English architectural history from the Anglo-Saxon period to the present day. It will be of interest to those seeking to develop their:
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