BY BRIAN LIBBY
Arthur C. Nelson: Future Livable Cities
A professor of planning at the University of Utah and director of the school's Metropolitan Research Center, Nelson’s research and practice have shaped the fields of infrastructure finance, smart growth, land use planning, and metropolitan development patterns. His latest book, Reshaping Metropolitan America, is recognized as a landmark achievement by planners like Bruce Katz and Peter Calthorpe, who writes, “Finally we have a comprehensive view of how the American Dream is changing and why.” Nelson will be joined for a panel discussion after the talk featuring former Metro councilor Rex Burkholder and Tom Kelly of remodeling company Neil Kelly. Pacific Northwest College of Art, Swigert Commons, 1241 NW Johnson Street. 7pm Monday, February 17. Free.
Displacement: the Platform as Design Strategy
A lecture by John Sergeant, an architect and emeritus lecturer in the Deptartment of Architecture at Robinson College at the University of Cambridge. All buildings modify their sites, some radically. There will be other sites from which material came and to which it goes. Carbon and other costs now reward a strategy of incorporating all excavation into the design. The talk will explore the history of this practice, from work by Rem Koolhaas to ancient Indian temples, particularly tracing the connection between Rafael Moneo's Kursaal at San Sebastian, Jorn Utzon's Sydney Opera House and Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin West. University of Oregon, White Stag Block, 70 NW Couch Street. 5:30pm Wednesday, February 19. Free.
Speaking as part of the Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Art & Craft's Applied Craft in Design MFA program's Graduate Visiting Artist Lecture Series, Matthias Pliessnig’s fluid, skeletal furniture forms are made using traditional steam-bending techniques with oak. His interest specifically with bending wood first developed in 2006 after making a boat. As a sculptor and woodworker his training developed during his studies at Kansas City Art Institute, the Rhode Island School of Design and the University of Wisconsin Madison. Human interaction imposed by furniture intrigues Pliessnig in his one-of-a-kind designs for benches. This interaction provides an additional consideration in the design process, one that is drastically different from considerations in creating a sculpture. Bison Building, 421 NE 10th Avenue. 6:30pm Wednesday, February 19. Free.
AIA Portland Emerging Professionals Happy Hour Series
A new monthly event brought to you by the AIA Portland Emerging Professionals Committee, which aims to further the professional development of students, interns and architects licensed under 10 years, through fellowship, education and supportive networking. GBD Architects, 1120 NW Couch Street, #300. 5:30pm Thursday, February 20. Free.
Learn simple and effective ways to stay healthy and save money at home this winter and beyond. Sponsored by the City of Portland's Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, the fair features exhibits from numerous community partners and also includes an extensive schedule of workshops held throughout the day. Experts will be available to talk about water and energy savings, personal health and healthcare, food and nutrition, community resources, recycling, yard care and more. Free professional childcare, blood lead testing for children and lunch are provided. David Douglas High School, 1001 SE 135th Avenue. 9:30am Saturday, February 22. Free.
The New Structure: Coleman Stevenson & Nora Wendl
“The only difference between reality and fiction is that fiction needs to be credible,” Mark Twain once commented. It is precisely in the tense space between reality and fabrication that architects and authors alike must work, constructing alternate, speculative worlds that are so believable clients will show their faith through financial and political support, so authentic that readers will live inside of scenes and forge relationships with characters. It is in this liminal space that Coleman Stevenson and PSU architecture professor Nora Wendl have constructed the Center for Fictive Architecture, a framework for their individual and collaborative projects. In this talk produced in connection with the nonprofit Project Cityscope, Stevenson and Wendl's first performance on behalf of the Center for Fictive Architecture, they introduce those ideas that form the basis of their current and future collaborations, in particular the related natures of architecture and poetry. Shout House, 210 SE Madison Street #11. 7pm Monday, February 24. Free (RSVP required).
Jose Luis Vallego: Urban Social Design
Vallejo, recently appointed with his partner Belinda Tato as the School of Architecture's 2014 Distinguished Visiting Professors of Urbanism, will discuss the pair’s award-winning Madrid-based practice, which specializes in design within the fields of urbanism, architecture, engineering and sociology and has designed and implemented projects in multiple European countries and in China. They describe their approach as “urban social design,” focusing on the design of environments, space and dynamics as a way of improving self-organization of citizens, social interaction within communities and their relationship with the environment. Since the firm’s formation in 2000, ecosistema urbano has received more than 30 awards in national and international architecture design competitions and during the last four years their work has been covered by more than 100 media outlets (national and international press, television programs, and specialized publications) from 30 countries, and their projects have been exhibited at multiple galleries, museums and institutions. Portland State University, Shattuck Hall Annex, SW Broadway and Hall Street. 6pm Thursday, February 27. Free.