This lecture surveys essential concepts and significant past and current projects that deal with interactive, responsive environments, i.e. buildings that can change their configuration, appearance, and environmental conditions in response to patterns of occupation and context (and in return can shape those too). The principal argument is that change in architecture is far from being adequately addressed or explored theoretically, experimentally, or phenomenologically.
Branko Kolarevic is a Professor of Architecture at the University of Calgary Faculty of Environmental Design, where he also holds the Chair in Integrated Design and co-directs the Laboratory for Integrative Design (LID). He has taught architecture at several universities in North America and Asia and has lectured worldwide on the use of digital technologies in design and production. He has authored, edited or co-edited several books, including “Building Dynamics: Exploring Architecture of Change” (with Vera Parlac), “Manufacturing Material Effects” (with Kevin Klinger), “Performative Architecture” (with Ali Malkawi) and “Architecture in the Digital Age.” He is a past president of the Association for Computer Aided Design in Architecture (ACADIA), past president of the Canadian Architectural Certification Board (CACB), and was recently elected future president of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA). He is a recipient of the ACADIA Award for Innovative Research in 2007 and ACADIA Society Award of Excellence in 2015.
Vera Parlac is an architect and educator with an integrative approach to design and practice. She is a registered architect in Pennsylvania, and serves as an assistant professor at the Faculty of Environmental Design at the University of Calgary. Parlac is one of the co-founders of the Laboratory for Integrative Design (LID), where design is engaged as a broadly integrative endeavor by fluidly navigating across different disciplinary territories. Her current work is focused on responsive material systems and informed by contemporary models in biology, material science, and mechatronic systems. Her research centers on experiments with composite materials that have the capacity to adapt under external and internal influences. Prior to her appointment in Calgary, she taught design and other subjects at several universities in North America, most recently at Temple University, and in Asia, in Hong Kong. Vera has worked in architectural firms in Philadelphia, Toronto, Boston, Miami, and Los Angeles, including Carlos Zapata Design Studio and Kieran Timberlake Associates.