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Columbia GSAPP at the 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial

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Media Advisory
3 October 2016

The 3rd Istanbul Design Biennial, Are We Human?, is curated by Columbia GSAPP Professor and Dean Emeritus Mark Wigley and Princeton University Professor Beatriz Colomina. Opening on 22 October 2016, the Biennial includes the work of many Columbia GSAPP faculty, students, and alumni, including Professor Andrés Jaque and his Office for Political Innovation as exhibition designer.

Studio-X Istanbul
Columbia GSAPP’s Studio-X Istanbul serves as one of the five main venues for the Biennial, hosting one of the four “clouds” of overlapping projects called Designing Life. It features experimental work on new forms of mechanical, electronic and biological life – including projects by GSAPP professors Juan Herreros, Hilary Sample and David Benjamin. Studio-X also hosts the major research project by Curious Assembly comprised of more than 50 experts in design. The installation documents the history of design in Turkey since the Ottoman reform of 1839 in a variety of fields including packaging, lighting, graphics, communications and advertising, housing, furniture, music, toys, landscape, health, industrial buildings, ceramics and non-governmental organizations. An extensive library of books and specialized reference material will remain at Studio-X Istanbul as a resource and reading-room for designers and scholars dedicated to the history of design in Turkey. In addition, Studio-X Istanbul will host a series of events, workshops, and panels through the course of the Biennial. Studio-X Istanbul is part of Columbia University’s global network, operating in Turkey through Columbia Global Centers | Istanbul.

Book Launch and Panel Discussion
Climates: Architecture and the Planetary Imaginary
Saturday, October 22, 2016, 11am–1pm

During the opening weekend, Columbia GSAPP Publications and Studio-X Istanbul will co-host a book launch and panel discussion for Climates: Architecture and the Planetary Imaginary. GSAPP Director of Publications James Graham will be joined by a panel of Turkish architects, designers, and scientists to discuss the response to climate change in the region.
[Venue and list of participants to be confirmed.]

Columbia GSAPP faculty participating in the Biennial:

  • Mark Wigley, Professor and Dean Emeritus, biennial co-curator
  • Andrés Jaque, Office for Political Innovation, exhibition designer
  • Zeynep Celik Alexander: Observer Affect / Observer Effect, with Vanessa Heddle and Elliott Sturtevant
  • David Benjamin, The Living: Open Future, with Sculpting Evolution Group, MIT Media Lab
  • Juan Herreros, estudioHerreros: The Designer Designed by the Humans
  • Laura Kurgan and the Center for Spatial Research: Conflict Urbanism: Aleppo and 1 Brain, 100 Billion Neurons, 100 Trillion Connections with the Brown Institute for Media Innovation and the Zuckerman Institute at Columbia University
  • Hilary Sample, MOS Architects: An Unfinished Encyclopedia of Scale Figures Without Architecture / Model Furniture
  • Mark Wasiuta: Detox USA with Florencia Alvarez, and Information Fall-Out: Buckminster Fuller’s World Game with Adam Bandler

Columbia GSAPP alumni participating in the Biennial:

  • Urtzi Grau and Cristina Goberna Pesudo (Fake Industries Architectural Agonism): Portable Indo Pacific
  • Mitch McEwen: Glitter Disaster
  • Charles Renfro (Diller Scofidio + Renfro): Unspoken

Current students from the M.Arch and CCCP programs working on the installations for the Biennial include Becca R. Book, Ayesha S. Ghosh, Chi-Chia Hou, Jarrett D. Ley, Jesse L. McCormick, Iara Pimenta, Gizem Sivri, Miranda J. Shugars. Columbia alums Diana Cristobal, Jessica H. Ngan and Bart-Jan Polman also worked on the Biennial installations.

Superhumanity e-flux Architecture
Columbia GSAPP faculty Laura Kurgan, Felicity Scott, Mabel O. Wilson, Jorge Otero-Pailos, and Andrés Jaque are also participating in the major SUPERHUMANITY e-flux architecture project accompanying the biennial. Visiting Professor Nikolaus Hirsch, who co-founded e-flux architecture, is co-editor of the series. In addition to the online publication, a SUPERHUMANITY reading room will be exhibited at the DEPO venue as part of the biennial.

  • e-flux Architecture is hosting a special event in conjunction with SUPERHUMANITY, featuring GSAPP faculty Laura Kurgan and Felicity Scott, among others:
    October 20, 4:30-6:30pm
    Galata Greek Primary School (Kemeraltı Cad. 49, Karaköy)