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31 July 2020
Journal of Architectural Education
Special Issue Editor(s)
Journal of Architectural Education / Arizona State University
Aarhus School of Architecture
University of Minnesota
Is there any room left for the rare and precious artifice that the built may possess? Sarcastic as it may sound, the question denotes a crisis. Architectural design faculty are increasingly turning away from the activity of building toward other modes of work that fulfill the requirements of academic promotion. Articles, books, installations and exhibitions have become more secure routes to produce research, yielding the ironic question: why build? At the same time, architectural practices have less time and fewer resources for research and speculation.
Tacitly or explicitly, building in the most basic and bare sense can be a unique form of inquiry for architects. A building requires rigor in practice and conception. It is a repository, not just of questions, but also of responses that contain scholarship opportunities for designers, builders and/or inhabitants. How do we position this knowledge to shape critical discourses that engage processes, technological impacts, and other topics within the field? What are the philosophical interrogations and responses that “the built” offers?
With this issue we make room for knowledge and questions that emerge from the built. What are the particular and critical discoveries that can be garnered from a close relationship with the edifice and its conception? Does engagement with the social, cultural and economic forces actualized outside of the studio space, through the act of building, generate particular forms of scholarship? Can we simulate this mode of working in the academy? How does pedagogy consider the contingencies of building?
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The Journal of Architectural Education issue 75:1 seeks Design as Scholarship and Scholarship of Design submissions that originate from architectural projects which have been built. How do we assess the value of the most basic of architectural activities anew? This is an occasion for architects and design scholars to reflect on built work, either personal or from others, and to create scholarship that situates such knowledge within contexts that can establish new directions for architecture to get back to the matter of building.
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