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University of Southern California

September 20, 2011

Visiting Professor Jennifer Siegal was awarded a Visions and Voices grant to produce the symposium Motopia: A New Age for Modular Construction to be held at USC on November, 2, 2011. Find out more at 

Emily Gabel-Luddy, FASLA, instructor in the USC Master of Landscape Architecture program, was elected in April  to a 4-year term as the newest member of the Burbank City Council. She will be serving as liaison to the Cultural Arts Commission and the Sustainable Commission in the City.

Paul Danna, AIA, has won the commission to design the new California State Superior Courthouse in Long Beach, with design partner Jose Palacios, AIA. He is also serving on the Executive Committee of AIA/Los Angeles, as Past President of the Chapter.

Christoph Kapeller will be presenting his research project "Chengdu Sp[eculative Mapping" at the Chengdu Biennale 2011 from September 29th until October 30th.

Kris Mun, designer and exhibitor for AAC’s Digital Futures exhibition in Shanghai August 2011, showed her work amongst other prominent practices, including Zaha Hadid Architects, Greg Lynn, UNStudio, that are engaging in computational and digital fabrication strategies in architecture.

M. Brian Tichenor, AIA, ASLA , is contributing  a chapter  for the upcoming Rizzolli  publication ‘The California Casa’, and his work has been featured in the books  ‘ Classic Homes of California’ and ‘At Home’, both published this year.

Linda C. Samuels, USC lecturer since the fall of 2010, has received a grant from UCLA's Ralph and Goldy Lewis Center for Regional Policy Studies in support of her research on failed projects for the 101 'trench' site, a quarter mile stretch in downtown Los Angeles where the freeway descends below grade. This research is part of her dissertation focusing on urban infrastructure redevelopment projects.

Mark Gangi, AIA, NCARB, LEED-AP was featured on AIA National Podcast as the Citizen Architect on the Move for September 2011

Adjunct Professor Regula Campbell AIA authored a presentation in June at the International Federation of Landscape Architecture World Congress: “Scales of Nature”, Zurich, Switzerland on the topic:  Biodiversity in the City: Enrichment for Urban Life and Work – “Making It Personal, Making It Real”.

Joe Sturges, Lecturer has completed WIldwood School campus as senior designer with Nancy Power & Associate in conjuction with Koning Eizenberg Architects. Other projects completed this year include Children's Institute with KEA and Indian Paintbrush Productions with Barton Myers Associates Inc.

Victoria Turkel Behner, PhD, is designing the upcoming exhibition "In Wonderland: The Surrealist Adventures of Women Artists in Mexico and the United States" at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, opening January 2012.

Adjunct Professor Doug Campbell ASLA will be recognized by the Government of Hangzhou, China this October for his contribution to the region’s “Quality of Life” through his design of  a recently completed sustainable new town re-visioning a former  industrial site in the City’s northern district.

Dr. Ken Breisch has stepped down after twelve years as Director of Graduate Programs in Historic Preservation, a program which he founded in 1999.  He will resume teaching and writing full-time in the School of Architecture.

Gary Paige’s architecture project, “Type Variant Houses” and artwork, “Ruled Surfaces” is the subject of an exhibition entitled “Other Works” at the School of Architecture at UC Berkeley, along with architects Wes Jones and IDEA Office partners Eric Kahn and Russell Thomsen.

Assistant Professor, Victor Jones and the Watts House Project were awarded a 2011 Graham Grant to complete work for the Watts House Project's Platform fence, pocket park, and façade improvement.

Alvin Huang was appointed as a Tenure-Track Professor of Architecture at the University of Southern California School of Architecture, Los Angeles. He will be teaching graduate and thesis design studios focused on advanced digital design techniques, material performance, and digital fabrication.  His office, Synthesis Design + Architecture, has also moved to Los Angeles from London.

Adjunct Associate Professor Michael Hricak, FAIA, and his Venice based design firm recently received city approval for an innovative hotel and conference center to be built in Redondo Beach, California which promises to set new standards for design and sustainability in this beachside community.

Scott Uriu, lecturer at USC, partner in the firm BplusU, was chosen as one of the finalists in the Silver Lake Sunset Junction Competition in June by the City of Silver Lake, also in June BplusU were chosen for the 2011 AIA Emerging Professional exhibit in Washington DC, BplusU’s work has been recently published in the book “Futuristic-Vision of future living”, and in August was featured in the LA Times LA Home section.

Assistant Professor Rachel Berney is presenting the paper "A New Spatial Fix: The Promise of Public Space in a Fragmented Buenos Aires" at the ACSP Conference in Salt Lake City, October 13-16, 2011.  Students from USC's MLA Program in the School of Architecture have work represented in the forthcoming book, "Representing Landscapes: A Visual Collection of Landscape Architectural Drawings” (Editor, Nadia Amoroso). Contributor for USC MLA, Rachel Berney.

USC Emeritus Professor Robert S. Harris, FAIA, ACSA Distinguished Professor and former ACSA President, concluded a 5-year appointment as Director of the USC Master of Landscape Architecture program. He was recognized as CELA Outstanding Educator for 2011, and will be awarded Honorary ASLA. membership at the ASLA Annual Meeting in October 2011.

Adjunct Assistant Professor Anna Neimark’s installation of an enormous extrusion of the Soviet hydraulic network in foam will open at the WUHO gallery in Hollywood on December 8th, accompanied by the publication, “The Infrastructural Monument: Stalin’s Water Works under Construction and in Representation,” in the forthcoming issue of Future Anterior. Research for this project has been supported by the USC Advancing Scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences (ASHSS) and the Harvard GSD Appleton Traveling Fellowship.

Erik Mar is working on two Los Angeles County Public Libraries, of 7200 sf and 16,000 sf. He also delivered a lecture on sustainability and environmental imperatives to the Public Library staff on their 2011 Staff Training Day.

Lecturer Mina M. Chow, AIA, NCARB, is shooting a pilot episode for web series on innovative architecture in Los Angeles with the City of Los Angeles Mayor's Office, and the Getty Research Institute Wim de Witt and USC School of Architecture Professor Jim Steele as humanities advisors.

Christine Lampert whose firm is Lampert Dias Architect's Inc. along with PDS West is working on a master plan to redesign a large portion of the Laguna Woods Village in Laguna Woods California. Laguna Woods is a community with a population of over 15,000 senior citizens in South Orange County. The project includes bringing the 1960's designed community into the 21st century.

Professor Marc Schiler presented a new definition for Performative Facades at the Facade Tectonics Conference, July 30, and at a public lecture at USC on Wednesday, August 24, based on research done during his sabbatical on reflective facades from Odeillo, France to Berlin.

Adjunct Associate Professor Warren Techentin and his firm Warren Techentin Architecture (WTARCH) won First Prize in the STREET 2020  Vision Competition in conjunction with the inaugural Tallinn Architecture Biennale (TAB) for 2011. The international competition invited architects, landscape architects, and planners to focus on the hybrid issue of 'Landscape Urbanism' as applied to making a new street in Estonia's capitol city. The competition sought design solutions to offset traffic concerns while improving the quality of urban life for pedestrians and cyclists.

Assistant Professor Karen M. Kensek organized the Fifth Annual Symposium on "Building Information Modeling:  Extreme BIM" last July.  Plans are already underway for the sixth conference to be held in Los Angeles in summer 2012.

Travis Longcore, Ph.D., of the USC Spatial Sciences Institute has become a guest critic and instructor in the Landscape Architecture program, bringing his expertise on urban ecology, restoration, conservation planning, and GIS to the curriculum.

Victor Regnier FAIA, Professor of Architecture and Gerontology will present a paper at the LeadingAge Conference in Washington DC on Dutch Service-hybrid Housing Models, as well as jury a competition for the Aging Means Business: Design for a New Age conference in Boston--both in the Fall.

"Structure and Design," a book by Professor G. Goetz Schierle, is posted on over 30 international web sites.

Lauren Matchison, NCARB, is currently designing a sustainable beach bungalow in Orange County.

Rob Ley was recently won two separate competitions to design permanent installations in both Seattle, WA & Kansas City, MO and is recently included in Madeline Schwartzman's new book 'See Yourself Sensing: Redefining Human Perception' and Rashida Ng’s upcoming book ‘INPUT_OUTPUT: Performative Materials in Architecture and Design’.

Eric Haas, AIA, Adjunct Assistant Professor, and his firm DSH had their project 2636 Residence featured in the exhibit "Tokyo/LA Houses" at July's Little Tokyo Design Week in Los Angeles.

USC faculty Behrokh Khoshnevis (Engineering), Neil Leach (Architecture), Anders Carlson (Architecture) and Madhu Thangavelu (Astronautics) have won a NASA grant to explore the use of the robotic fabrication technology, Contour Crafting, for building structures on the Moon. The grant was one of 30 awarded to over 700 applicants by the NASA Innovation Advanced Concepts Program (NIAC). For further details see:

Ric. Abramson (2nd year Studio Critic)/Workplays studio recently completed its latest project, Demitasse Coffee Bar Lounge, downtown Los Angeles in Little Tokyo.

JFAK Architects, the firm of Associate Professor and UG Chair Alice Kimm, FAIA, was awarded two AIA California Council Design Awards for projects completed at Caltech and in Santa Monica. JFAK's downtown parking structure for the LAPD was featured in Architectural Record and named one of the "5 most beautiful parking garages in Los Angeles" by LA Weekly.

Assistant Prof. Dr. David Gerber will present design computation research ‘Building Skin Intelligence’ at the ACADIA 2011 conference, he will keynote the largest and leading Brazilian AEC venue on ‘Building Industry Innovation: An Evolution of Building Information Modeling and Computing in the AEC.’

Assistant Professor Gail Peter Borden was named Director of the Master of Architecture Program. His recently opened installation at the USC-URC, entitled Density Frames consists of a variably triangulated structure interlaced with a multistory pneumatic and coincided with the release of his 2nd book Matter: Material Processes in Architectural Production from Routledge.

Vinayak Bharne has authored a chapter titled “Saving the Qanat: The Dilemmas of Sustainability & Strategic Conservation in Yazd, Iran” in the forthcoming book “Aesthetics of Sustainable Architecture” (010 Publishers, Rotterdam, 2011)

Esther Margulies principal at ValleyCrest Design Group in Los Angeles has been working on the 2014 World Horticultural Exposition Exposition in Qingdao, China along with design build projects in Santa Monica and Malibu California.

Contact Associate Professor Douglas Noble, FAIA, Ph.D.,  ( for details on how to submit paper and session proposals on the subject of building envelopes for the 8th FACADE TECTONICS CONFERENCE scheduled for June, 2012, in Los Angeles.

Peter Simmonds has designed two LEED Platinum buildings so far and is working on number three.

Todd Gish, PhD, AIA, is contributing a chapter to an upcoming anthology on urban planning in Los Angeles; the essay joins a revisionist literature demonstrating a long history of plans for LA, created by prominent national planners who utilized the best professional practices of their day.

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