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Showing posts from July, 2016

Houston, We Have a Program - Part 1

The following post was written in early June when I started at TIP - but I didn't have time to complete it.  The rest of my TIP posts will be written now, in late July / early August, after the fact.

It feels crazy to write it, but I'm back at summer camp, and not just any camp, but Duke TIP.  I'm here at Rice University in Houston for the month of June, living in the dorm, eating cafeteria food, and re-acclimating to the heat and humidity.  This time, though, I'm going to be the adult in the room, teaching a class of 8th to 10th grade students on "Architecture in the Urban Environment."  Maybe we'll call it CityLab for short, because that sounds cool.  [Edit: we didn't call it that.  Oh well!]

I've been here a few days and have managed to get off campus most days, if only for short distances.  I walked to the Museum of Fine Arts - Houston (MFAH), the Contemporary Art Museum - Houston (CAMH), and the Menil Collection.  Since Rice is located adjace…

Visiting Hearst Castle

Back in February, I decided that the thing I wanted for my birthday was to visit Julia Morgan's Hearst Castle.  If you aren't familiar with architect Julia Morgan, then you should fix that right away.  Two years ago she was awarded the AIA Gold Medal, posthumously, as the first woman to receive this significant prize.  (Many of us wondered why the AIA couldn't find a living woman architect to be awarded, but that's a story for another post.)  She's generally considered one of the most important architects of the California Arts & Crafts movement of the early 20th century.  She was the first woman admitted to the French Ecole des Beaux-Arts, the most prestigious school of architecture of the European academy system; the first woman licensed in architecture in California; and one of very few women architects practicing in this country in the early 20th century.  Hearst Castle is considered one of her masterpieces.




Unlike many of her buildings, which were homes, …