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Sustaining Identity III Symposium

Sustaining Identity III unites visionaries and practitioners from different generations, cultures and geographies - from Africa, Europe, Asia and the Americas - to prove that the creation of uniquely localised, people-centred space is still possible.

When: 29 November 2012 — 10h00 – 17h30
Location: Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7 2RL

Sustaining Identity III brings together acclaimed contemporary architects whose work rejects homogenisation by prioritising place, the senses and memory: an ‘architecture of resistance’ in the words of renowned architectural theorist Juhani Pallasmaa. 2012 Pritzker Architecture Prize Laureate Wang Shu; 2012 Global Holcim Award winner Francis Kéré; Aga Khan Award winners Li Xiaodong and Anna Heringer; Bijoy Jain (Studio Mumbai); Rick Joy; Christopher Lee (Serie Architects); Josep Lluís Mateo; Declan O’Carroll (Arup Associates); Kongjian Yu (Turenscape); and Juhani Pallasmaa will speak at the event curated by Pallasmaa together with Paul Brislin of Arup Associates. The event will coincide with the publication of the November issue of Architectural Design (AD), entitled Human Experience and Place, which features the work of the speakers and other important contemporary architects who celebrate the spirit of individual place. The event is supported by Architectural Review and is produced in collaboration with the V&A.

Anna Heringer is an architectural designer from Salzburg, Austria. Her work focuses on the use of local materials, skills and energy sources to create buildings that are distinct and undeniably from their place. In 1998, Herringer lived in the village of Rudrapur, Bangladesh, as a volunteer for Dipshikha, a local nongovernmental organization. In that same town in 2005-2006, her diploma project, a school built from mud and bamboo, came to fruition. Following this success, in 2007-2008 she coordinated students from Bangladesh and Austria to build a vocational school and a pilot project on rural housing in Rudrapur. Her experience in Bangladesh taught her at a grassroots level that architecture is a tool to improve lives. From October 2008 to May 2011 Anna led the studio BASEhabitat— architecture for development at the University of Arts in Linz, Austria. Since 2010 she has been the honorary professor of the UNESCO Chair Earthen Architecture Programme. She recieved a number of awards such as the Aga Khan Award for Architecture (2007), the AR Emerging Architecture Awards (2006 and 2008), the Archprix–Hunter Douglas Award (2006) and, most recently, the Global Award for Sustainable Architecture in 2011.

Francis Diébédo Kéré was born in Burkina Faso and educated in Germany. An architect, he now spends his time between Europe and Africa, applying his research, which focuses on development strategies with local character. Education development and upliftment best describe the tenets that drive his architectural work. Having had the opportunity to be educated in Europe, he now considers it his duty to use his skills for the benefit of the people of his home continent. His work promotes modern and sustainable architecture in Africa by adapting technology from the industrialised world in simple ways, with a keen awareness of climatic conditions and the benefits of using local materials.

Wang Shu is an architect and professor born in Urumqi, Xinjiang province, China. He received his first degree in architecture in 1985 and his Masters degree in 1988, both from the Nan Nanjing Institute of Technology. In 1997, he founded AmateurArchitecture Studio, based in Hangzhou, China, with his wife, Lu Wenyu. The office name references the approach an amateur builder takes – one based on spontaneity, craft skills and cultural traditions. Wang Shu spent a number of years working on building sites to learn traditional skills. The firm utilises his knowledge of everyday techniques to adapt and transform materials for contemporary projects. He is Professor and Head of the Architecture School at the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou. In 2011 he became the first Chinese Kenzo Tange Visiting Professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, and also received the Gold Medal of Architecture from the Académie d’Architecture of France. He has exhibited individually and participated in several major international exhibitions. Amateur Architecture Studio’s built works in China include the Ningbo Contemporary Art Museum, Ningbo (2005), Xiangshan Campus, China Academy of Art (Phase I), Hangzhou (2004); Xiangshan Campus (Phase II) (2007), and the Ceramic House, Jinhua (2006).


10.00 Registration

10.30 V&A: Welcome, Paul Brislin (Arup Associates)
10.35 Keynote, Juhani Pallasmaa
11.10 Li Xiaodong (Li Xiaodong Atelier)
11.35 Rick Joy (Rick Joy Architects)
12.00 Josep Lluís Mateo (Mateo Arquitectura)

12.40 Lunch

13.10 Introduction
13.15 Anna Heringer
13.40 Christopher Lee (Serie Architects)
14.05 Kongjian Yu (Turenscape)
14.30 Bijoy Jain (Studio Mumbai)
14.55 Discussion, moderated by Helen Castle

15.20 Refreshments

15.35 Introduction
15.40 Declan O’Carroll (Arup Associates)
16.05 Francis Kéré (Kéré Architecture)
16.30 Wang Shu (Amateur Architecture Studio)
17.05 Closing discussion, with Juhani Pallasmaa and Architectural Practitioners

17.30 Close

In collaboration with Architectural Design (AD) and Arup Associates.

Tickets: £25, £20 £10 students

Book online or call 020 7942 2211

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