Lecture Series: Liz Ogbu, Studio-O | Design in the Apocalypse

Wednesday Oct. 7, 2020 , All Day

Apocalypse comes from the Greek word that meant "revelation" or "unveiling." The pandemic and the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor among others laid bare a landscape of injustice and oppression that have long been in existence. Addressing systems of harm will never be easy, but it is necessary work. For too long, design has often been complicit in that harm. This talk will explore what it means to wrestle with that and explore what it could mean to negotiate issues of race and space in service of healing.


A designer, urbanist, and spatial justice activist, Liz is a global expert on engaging and transforming unjust urban environments. From designing shelters for immigrant day laborers in the U.S. to a water and health social enterprise for low-income Kenyans, Liz has a long history of working with communities in need to leverage the power of design to catalyze sustained social impact. She is Founder and Principal of Studio O, a multidisciplinary design consultancy that works at the intersection of racial and spatial justice. In addition to her practice, Liz has held academic appointments at several institutions including at UC Berkeley, Stanford’s d.school, and the University of Virginia. She also previously served as the Droga Architect-in-Residence in Australia, investigating urban marginalized populations and community development practices in the country.

Liz has written for and been profiled in publications such as The New York Times, The Atlantic’s CityLab, and the Journal of Urban Design.  Her projects have been featured in museum exhibitions and received numerous design awards globally. Her honors include IDEO.org Global Fellow, TEDWomen Speaker, Aspen Ideas Scholar, Senior Fellow of the Design Futures Council, and one of Public Interest Design’s Top 100. She earned architecture degrees from Wellesley College and Harvard University.


The UTSOA Fall 2020 Lecture Series will be presented digitally through Zoom and will be live-streamed on the Texas Architecture YouTube channel. All lectures will take place at 1 PM unless noted otherwise.