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Syracuse students hosting regional conference on 'Reclaiming Architecture'

October 18, 2010

Elaine Wackerow
(315) 443-6004

The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS) at Syracuse will host “Reclaiming Architecture,” the national organization’s fall 2010 Northeast Quad Conference, to be held at Syracuse University Oct. 21-24. More than 200 architecture students, from more than 20 schools throughout the northeast United States and Canada, are expected to attend the event. Student leaders and emerging professionals will gather to discuss the changing role of the architect in today’s society, and will evaluate new ways for architects to engage in political, economic and social processes, especially in the area of urban revitalization. The conference will take advantage of its context, by using Syracuse as a specific focus of consideration.

The conference will include a two-day symposium featuring speakers from across disciplines, a workshop series, tours of the new Syracuse Center of Excellence headquarters and Near Westside green housing sites, and will culminate with the construction of a series of temporary parks in downtown Syracuse.

princeramusOn Friday evening, acclaimed New York City architect Joshua Prince-Ramus, principal and founder of REX, will deliver the keynote address, “Agency,” at 5 p.m. in Shemin Auditorium, located in the Shaffer Art Building. The lecture is free and open to the public. All conference presentations will be streamed live at Times for all presentations can be found at

“Over the past years, we’ve see the architecture profession become more marginalized from other disciplines. Our goal through this conference is to raise questions about the status and direction of our profession and, more importantly, to offer insight and experience for finding the answers and solutions,” says fifth-year Syracuse Architecture student and AIAS Conference Chair Stephen Klimek. “Together, we will begin to ‘reclaim architecture’ by designing and manifesting ‘architecture of agency’ throughout the city of Syracuse as a means of demonstrating our ability to effect positive change in our world. Our conversations and our actions during this event will continue to reclaim architecture as we leave behind a profession of marginalization and begin an architecture of action.”

Prince-Ramus received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy with distinction from Yale University in 1991 and a master of architecture from Harvard University in 1996, where he was both an SOM fellow and the first Araldo Cossutta Fellow. He was the founding partner of OMA New York—the American affiliate of the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) in the Netherlands—and served as its principal until he renamed the firm REX in 2006. He was described as the “savior of American architecture” by Esquire magazine in its December 2008 “Genius Issue,” and identified as one of the “20 Essential Young Architects” by ICON magazine in April 2008. REX projects include the Dallas Center for the Performing Arts Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre in Texas; Museum Plaza, a 62-story art institute and mixed-use development in Louisville, Ky.; and the Istanbul headquarters for Vakko. The firm recently received second prize in both the international competition for the new Edvard Munch Museum in Oslo, Norway, and the Finnish Innovation Fund’s Low2No sustainable development competition in Helsinki, Finland. He is a fall 2010 Syracuse Architecture NYC visiting critic.

For more information about AIAS Syracuse chapter, see

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