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.’

CREAte hosts Professor Martin Bressani at St Augustine’s Abbey

A week of teaching and research activities in honour of our guest Professor Martin Bressani, director of the McGill School of Architecture in Montreal, was launched with a special event at the Pugin church of St Augustine in Ramsgate last night. Professor Bressani is a leading expert in the Gothic Revival, and he spoke to an audience from the parish about his early interest in the subject and the relationship of Pugin’s ideas to the Modern Movement. His talk was followed by a concert by PhD students and CREAte members Gimin Lee (ukulele) and Giacomo Damiani (accordion). Howard Griffin then presented an audio-visual display projected onto the interior walls of the church, assisted by students from our Architectural Visualisation programme. The evening was rounded off with performances on guitar by tutor Henry Sparks and second-year Architecture student Daniel Duarte.

CREAte thanks Father Marcus Holden for hosting us generously at the church, and to Anthony Jinks from the parish team for kindly looking after us over the evening.