Dr Ambrose Gillick is Principal Investigator for British Academy funded research project

BA (Hons) Architecture Stage 3 Coordinator, Dr Ambrose Gillick, is Principal Investigator for a successful British Academy funded research project titled, ‘British Academy Special Research Grants: Covid-19 – ‘Making-Unmaking-Remaking Home in Lockdown Margate. Co-investigators of the project are Professor Helen Carr (Kent Law School) and Professor Karen Jones (School of History). The research project will run from July 2020 until October 2021.

Dr Gillick writes, “Set in Dalby Square and Gardens, Margate, a vulnerable community disproportionately impacted by Covid-19, this project explores and maps home as process and network in a COVID 19 context using a transdisciplinary methodology drawing on law, history, architecture, health and housing studies. In this project home is understood as simultaneously bounded and networked, a space and a set of processes and relationships. We utilise the focus on home networking and home making-unmaking-remaking that has been the inevitable consequence of ‘lockdown’ to unpack the taken-for-granted understanding of home as a safe haven and explore issues around social and environmental regulation, inequalities, marginalization, vulnerability and dislocation as they have been intensified by COVID-19. We situate these in, somewhat paradoxical, historical understandings of Margate as a ‘haven of health’, and develop a toolkit for a rich and productive understanding of contemporary home making, unmaking and remaking during a global pandemic.”

Dr Manolo Guerci to present at Giancarlo De Carlo GDC100 ‘Resonances’ Seminar

Senior Lecturer, Dr Manolo Guerci will be presenting at the upcoming Giancarlo De Carlo GDC100 ‘Resonances’ Seminar taking place on Thursday 16 July at 15.30 BST.

The ‘Resonances’ seminar aims to share ideas and comments on the wide selection of texts by Giancarlo De Carlo proposed in the marathon. The texts are a source and a guide to an extraordinary methodology of reading the place as a fundamental starting point for the design project. A panel of speakers from British universities involved in the marathon will open the discussion to invite all the readers and interested students to propose their thoughts and add new keywords.

Dr Manolo Guerci writes, “The conversation will be on Giancarlo De Carlo and his relationship with the Renaissance, particularly with Francesco di Giorgio Martini. It will focus on an essay De Carlo wrote in 1985 on the Palazzo Ducale in Urbino titled: Gli Spiriti del Palazzo Ducale (the ghosts of the Palazzo Ducale in Urbino). One of the masterpieces of the Italian Renaissance at the hearth of Federico da Montefeltro’s patronage, the Palazzo Ducale has long been a subject of fascination for me. As well as the workshop of leading architect-engineers such as Di Giorgio Martini, the palace is also known as the setting of the conversations which Baldassare Castiglione represents as having taken place in the Hall of Vigils in 1507 in his celebrated Book of the Courtier. De Carlo’s essay provides interesting insights.”

If you would like to attend, please use the following link via Zoom:

https://zoom.us/j/93837326233
Password: 685110

You can also keep up to date with Giancarlo De Carlo GDC100 on Instagram.

Howard Griffin organises online conference as part of Architecture Media Politics Society

Howard Griffin, a member of the Centre for Research in European Architecture (CREAte) and the Digital Architecture Research Centre (DARC) has organised a conference called Connections: Exploring Heritage, Architecture, Cities, Art, Media and is part of the Architecture Media Politics Society (AMPS) research organisation’s series of major international conferences. AMPS sees the definition, debates and concerns of the built environment as intrinsic to those at the heart of other social, cultural and political discourses. Its focus is cross disciplinary and draws on the media, politics and the social sciences. It invites participation from all sectors: architects, planners, policy makers, artists, academics, the public and community activists. It functions as an open access platform for publication, a forum for debate through conferences and workshop, a conduit for book publications.

The conference, which will be hosted online on the 29 – 30 June 2020, notes that, particularly in recent months, the ‘digital’ is ubiquitous across all disciplines connected with life in cities: urban history, architecture, planning, art, design, media, communications, and more. As the tools we use today merge and blur across disciplines, this conferences asks educators and professionals to consider the following. How can we best manage, direct and utilise the unique potentialities of this interdisciplinary and technological moment? Are we rethinking objects of art and design from the past and future? Are we reconsidering modes of communication, styles of teaching and ways of living? Are we seeing new links between designed objects, visualised spaces and cultural meanings? Are we understanding creative, documentary and media practices in new ways? Are we developing our own knowledge through the technologies, tools or thinking of other disciplines?

A number of staff and students at the University of Kent will be presenting papers. Howard Griffin will be presenting about his virtual reality project, created with MA Architectural Visualisation students in his paper, The Future of the Past: Reconstructing St Augustine’s Abbey, Canterbury.  Head of School, Professor Gerald Adler will present his paper titled, ‘Script, Nondescript’, Professor Gordana Fontana Giusti will present her paper titled, ‘Designing Public Spaces to Empower Citizens: Reversing the Subject / Object Relation in Smart Cities’, and PhD student, Rafaella Siagkri will be presenting her paper titled, ‘Understanding and Preserving Cultural Heritage in Expressionist Architecture Using Virtual Reality.’

Professor Fontana-Giusti interviewed by TRT World television

Professor of Architecture and Urban Regeneration, Gordana Fontana-Giusti, was recently interviewed by Turkish television channel, TRT World as part of their flagship arts and culture programme, ‘Showcase’ on 26 February to discuss Zaha Hadid’s architectural design philosophy. The interview discussed title of ‘female architect’ and how Zaha Hadid continually broke glass ceilings in her cause for promoting new architecture. Watch the full interview online now.

CREAte Open Lecture: Adam Richards

The next CREAte Open Lecture will be given by Adam Richards with his talk titled, ‘Playing with time – fiction and history in recent projects’ on Tuesday 18th February at 6pm in Marlowe Lecture Theatre 1.

Adam Richards will talk about the ideas and themes that have informed some of his recent projects, including Nithurst Farm and Ditchling Museum of Art and Craft. Adam Richards is a British architect whose work has encompassed architecture, interior design, furniture and landscape design. Adam Richards Architects is an award winning practice recognised for its work on a range of arts, heritage and cultural projects including the Ditchling Museum of Art and Crafts. The practice has a particular interest in architectural history and cultural continuity within contemporary situations.

All welcome!

Postgraduate Research Seminar: Iliona Outram-Khalili

The first Postgraduate Research Seminar of the year will be given by Iliona Outram-Khalili with her talk titled, ‘Unity within diversity: Masonry, method and analogy in the Byzantine Church of Hagia Sophia, Thessaloniki’ on Wednesday 22 January from 4 – 5pm in the Digital Crit Space.

This PhD thesis proposes that load-bearing masonry architecture contains analogies for timeless, metaphysical truths, experienced with all the senses. How can one prove this if the mason-builders of the great historical cathedrals, mosques, palace precincts, and temples never wrote it down? There aren’t any masons who wrote, “while I was setting up the central compass I was meditating on God as the unitary source of all being, and then I started to build the dome in a circle and I thought, yes, the circumference depends on the centre but the centre does not need the circumference!”. Therefore, how can one show that the poetics of building could be an initiation into a holistic, creative meditation, and a journey to mature consciousness?

This thesis selects the typical 7-8th century Byzantine church of Hagia Sophia Thessaloniki, to compare the ritual actions and iconography with the masonry architecture; it is a unique example of this Byzantine dome-in-cross ‘typos’ because it has the core of its original mosaics, and in it the early liturgies are still celebrated. My research finds analogous themes in all three disciplines, enabling me to propose intention by the master masons to transmit such timeless and metaphysical truths through the architecture. This helps us to re-discover a language of architecture that guides humans to being in harmony natural environment, much needed at a time that humans are destroying the earth. The thesis also seeks to rediscover creative hands-on work as a healing for the individual and the community. It is to be hoped that the conclusions of this research are transferable to modern architecture and sustainable arts and technologies.

By Iliona Outram-Khalili, PhD Student

CREAte Open Lecture: John Goodall, Country Life

The next CREAte Open Lecture of the academic year will be given by John Goodall, Architectural Editor of Country Life, with his talk titled, ‘Under a spell: Gothic 1500 – 1700’. The lecture will take place on Tuesday 21 January at 6pm in Marlowe Lecture Theatre 1.

It is often supposed that the course of 16th century England abandoned its medieval traditions of architecture. In fact, medieval buildings continued to be admired and to shape English architecture. This lecture will explore some of the ways in which medieval architecture was preserved, imitated and understood prior to the Gothic revival in the 19th century.

All welcome!

Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin to speak at University’s Roundtable on Heritage

Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin is one of the speakers at the first in a series of Roundtables on Heritage, organised by the University’s Centre of Heritage under the direction of Dr Sophie Vigneron, Reader at Kent Law School. The event will look at the significance of historic buildings as cultural symbols, and how to address the problems and ethical questions that surround their restoration; i.e. who plays a role in the process? What kind of decisions are they making?

One of the central issues is that of the historical recreation, sometime referred to as ‘pastiche’ architecture, and this came to the fore particularly in the aftermath of the recent major fire at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. Dr Brittain-Catlin will speak on the theme, ‘There is no such thing as pastiche’. He will be joined by the Surveyor to the Fabric of Canterbury Cathedral, Jonathan Deeming who will be speaking about ‘Challenges of preservation for the Cathedral of Canterbury’, Dr Emily Guerry from the School of History on the topic, ‘The history and identity of the Gothic cathedral’, and Andrew Edwards from Canterbury Cathedral Trust who will be finishing the evening off with, ‘Giving for a good cause, why give to heritage?’.

The first roundtable will be on Monday 20 January from 6pm – 8pm in the Moot court room, Widoger Law Building. The discussion will be followed by a drinks reception.

Dr Nikolaos Karydis gives lecture at British School at Rome

Dr Nikolaos Karydis, Senior Lecturer and MSc Architectural Conservation programme director at Kent School of Architecture and Planning recently gave a lecture titled, ‘The lost gateway of early modern Rome: the development of the port of Ripa Grande from the sixteenth to the eighteenth century’ at the British School at Rome on 2 December 2019. The lecture explored the development of the Ripa Grande, the main river port of Rome during the Early Modern period. Find out more about the lecture here.

Professor Gordana Fontana-Giusti speaks at AHRA 2019

Professor Gordana Fontana-Giusti, Associate Dean, and Professor in Architecture and Urban Design at Kent School of Architecture and Planning (KSAP) recently presented her paper titled, ‘The Window and the Map: Representation of Space and Collective Life in Early-Modern Europe’ at the 16th Annual International Conference of the Architectural Humanities Research Association (AHRA) in November 2019.

The presentation was part of Professor Fontana-Giusti’s long-term research on perspective in the architecture, urban design and the new consciousness in the Early-Modern period. The focus of the paper was on two models of spatial representation and related epistemological paradigms: the one that has emerged at the Italian peninsula and the other developed in Holland. By comparing the two models, the conclusions were drawn about their differences, complementarities and legacies.

Gordana Fontana-Giusti is a member of the AHRA Steering Committee Group and has been actively involved in its work. She was also the founding director of KSAP’s MA Architecture and Urban Design course, as well as a PhD supervisor with areas of interest in architectural theory, representation and urban design.