American Univesity of Beirut

MSFEA architecture students at the Seoul Biennale for Architecture and Urbanism

​​​​​​​The Department of Architecture and Design (ArD)​ at the Maroun Semaan Faculty of Engineering and Architecture (MSFEA) participated in this year's Seoul Biennale for Architecture and Urbanism (SBAU 2019), within the framework of the exhibit Global Studio, curated by Sanki Choi, professor and director of the Architecture Program at the University of Seoul. The Biennale opened on September 7, 2019 and will remain open until the 10th of November. The Global Studio exhibit includes the work of several advanced architecture studios undertaken at renowned international schools of architecture, from Harvard, University of Pennsylvania, Columbia University, the Architecture Association, the University of Kuwait, among several others.

ArD's contribution to the exhibition involved the work developed by third and fourth year architecture students in two Vertical Studios from Spring 2018-19, which responded to the Biennale's general theme of the Collective City and its sub-themes of Collective Infrastructure and Post-domestic City. Curated by professors Carla Aramouny, Nicolas Fayad​, Rana Samara Jubayli​ and Christos Marcopoulos, the studios' contribution positioned the two parallel student work vis a vis the two themes and scales of intervention, from the dense urban context of Beirut and the proposal for new small housing alternatives, to the peri-urban coastal context of Zouk Mosbeh and the proposal for new ecological and infrastructural schemes.

The two studios Ecologies of Leisure and Infrastructure and Invisible Plots: Alternative Housing for Beirut were displayed as two parallel scalar investigations, and the exhibition layout included a combined mapping of the two context​​​s, a digital display of the student projects, and a compilation of research and analytical mappings presented in the format of a booklet. The outcomes of this exhibit will involve a Global Studio publication, compiling the different studios' outputs from the participating schools.

In parallel to the Biennale opening, a Global Studio symposium was organized on September 8, where assistant professor Carla Aramouny presented the Vertical Studios theme and student work, particularly focusing on the Infrastructural sub-theme and its relationship to ecology and the coast.

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