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Nasrine Seraji, Michelle Howard | Practice based Research – Research based Practice

Organisational Units
Location Description
IKA Lecture Room R211a
Location Venue (1)
Main Building
Location Address (1)
Schillerplatz 3
Location ZIP and/or City (1)
1010 Vienna

Lecture within the lecture series "The Practice of Research" at the Institute of Art and Architecture.

The question of what constitutes research in a school of architecture is particularly important today and intrinsically linked with the current metamorphosis of the profession itself.After a constant narrowing of the definition of the profession since the 70s a counter-explosion has taken place which has not only widened its scope again but shifted and questioned its very foundations.

In this lecture series members of the Faculty of Architecture of the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna will present the research they are currently performing, their methods and outlook on the practice of research.

The first lecture in this series which took place on the 15 th of March by Prof. Angelika Schnell entitled Forgetting Architecture , explored aspects of the Theory of the Architect Aldo Rossi. This lecture represents a high quality example of the practice of research in its most recognizable guise

The second lecture in this series is entitled Practice based Research -Research based Practice and will be given jointly by Prof. Nasrine Seraji and Prof. Michelle Howard. Both professors are also practicing architects in domains which encompass that of the traditional practice of architecture and its metamorphosis.

The lecture will begin with a presentation of their respective competition entries for the new House of Arts and Culture (the Lebanese-Omani Centre) in Beirut and ideas which have been part of their architectural investigations.From that common starting point their lectures will diverge to describe through other research projects their particular convictions, concerns and areas of interest.

The Beirut House of Art and Culture is a congested set of paradoxes: a museum without a collection, a cultural centre that can be rented out for other activities and generating additional income to help the centre survive financially, a building on the limits of two political factions. The combination of these demands (and our reading of the site, our observations) led us to propose a project in which the ascent of the ground becomes the principal thrust of the building… The site has a section that naturally gives the possibility of organizing the building according to its two grounds/levels, which can be easily exploited for an upper and lower access point. Between the two levels, the main entry hall turns into a cascade of spaces for information, cinema, exhibits, cafes, and shops. Circulation through the building becomes the main reference for movement and access to programmed space. At the top level, the visit ends with a panoramic view over the city of Beirut, which, though devastated and littered with ruins, is still excruciatingly beautiful.

Michelle Howard House of Arts (the Lebanese Omani Centre) in Beirut