USC Asia Architecture & Urbanism Study Abroad Program

I seem to have more questions than answers

Where are we going?

I seem to have more questions than answers.

Architecture is 22 years old going on forever. I do not know where it’s going. Our fathers had postmodernism and their fathers had modernism before them. What about my generation? What are we going to do to piss off the establishment?

I’m sorry. Perhaps that is a poorer choice of words on my part. Let me try again:

What are we going to do to revolutionize the establishment?

There. That’s better.

In the 1960’s, The Movement was characterized by the at-the-time audacious and radical writings and creations of Buckminster Fuller, Yona Friedman, and Cedric Price. These architecture student pioneers, along with Peter Cook, would create fantastical work on architecture and urbanism under the banner of Architecture Telegram or Archigram. Works such as Instant City and Walking City, just to name a few, were the epitome of the avant-garde work that the student group was trumpeting at the time. This was not simply a publication along the lines of such prior publications  Polygon, Clip-Kit, or Megascope, but a publication that shook the mighty Architecture Association of London enough to provoke them to write an article about it in their Journal, warning those in the architectural community that:

“there are real dangers to designing in living and designing up to the minute.”

In the present day, an era in which demands up-to-the-minute everything, the discourse has changed. Everyone is obsessed with what is the next focal point of design will be. Some make the claim that parametric technology is the tool to take us there. That being able to design and modify more quickly will also push the industry forward. Then what about mobile architecture? The urban construct is fundamentally based on mobility, circulation, and movement, so why wouldn’t a mobile architecture be an appropriate fit for the creation or evolvement of the world’s cities?

These are important but relatively small variables in an otherwise large equation.

This is a serious question for anyone who is reading this: who is our generations Archigram? Where is this generation’s Buckminster Fuller? Who is pushing the buttons? I’m asking this because I want to know. I need to know. We need to know.


-Christopher Glenn



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AAU FALL 2013:

University of Southern California
School of Architecture
Asia Architecture and Urbanism
Study Abroad Program

Andrew Liang
Bu Bing
Steven Chen
Yo-Ichiro Hakomori
Andrew Liang
Yuyang Liu
Neville Mars
Academic Contributors:
Thomas Chow, SURV
Bert de Muynck, Movingcities.org
Manying Hu, SZGDADRI, ITDP, Guangzhou
Clare Jacobson, Design Writer, Editor, Curator
Laurence Liauw, SPADA, Hong Kong
Mary Ann O'Donnell, Shenzhen Noted, Fat Bird, Shenzhen
Paul Tang, Verse, Shanghai
Li Xiangning, Tongji University, Shanghai
Daniel Aguilar
Hong Au
Michael den Hartog
Caroline Duncan
Nefer Fernandez
Christian Gomez
Isabelle Hong
Jin Hong Kim
Ashley Louie
Javier Meier
Paula Narvaez
Ashlyn Okimoto
Tamar Partamian
Samuel Rampy
Luis Villanueva
Krista Won
Tiffany Wu

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