Contact: Michael Ford
Michael Ford’s Hip Hop Architecture Lecture Tour
For Immediate Release
September 19, 2015 - The University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC) hosted Michael Ford during his Hip Hop Architecture lecture tour. Ford was invited to deliver a keynote address during the National Organization of Minority Architects Students (NOMAS) Symposium titled, "Breaking The Glass Ceiling." The attendees included students and faculty from Illinois' School of Architecture, the department of African American Studies and the Sociology department. UIUC was the latest stop on Ford’s Hip Hop Architecture tour, which has included lectures at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, University of Detroit Mercy's School of Architecture, Syracuse University and University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee's School of Architecture and Urban Planning.
Ford’s research and lecture highlights the intersection of architecture and hip hop culture through three interconnected realms, academic research, professional practice and media. He is dedicated to stimulating cross disciplinary discourse on the sociological and cultural implications of architecture and urban planning on its inhabitants.
During the Illinois lecture, Ford unveiled the subconscious roles of historical figures such as architect Le Corbusier and planner Robert Moses in creating the environments which necessitated the birth of hip hop culture. With a DJ by his side, Ford used live samples of popular hip hop lyrics as a post occupancy report of urban America’s inhabitance of modernists’ visions. Ford highlights, in academic spaces, the seldom told history of the systematic destruction of working-class and poor African American communities and the ensuing injustices. Ford used vernacular which fosters the recruitment, retention and success of minority students in schools of architecture. Ford's lecture concluded with samples of hip hop artists' influence on architecture. Ford examined the works of Ice Cube, who studied architectural drafting, Pharrell Williams , Kanye West and Jay Z.
“The lecture was by far one of the liveliest I have ever seen in over 30 years at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's School of Architecture. Ford's unique interpretation has the ability to draw the attention of a new generation to the power of architecture and design.”
Dr. Kathyrn Anthony -
Professor, UIUC School of Architecture
Following the lecture, Dr Kathryn Anthony, architecture professor at UIUC School of Architecture said, “The lecture was by far one of the liveliest I have ever seen in over 30 years at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's School of Architecture. His winning combination of images, speech, and music kept students on the edges of their seats, tapping their feet, with their eyes wide open. It was fascinating to learn about the origins of some of the most well-known hip hop artists in some of the nation's most troubled housing projects. Ford's unique interpretation has the ability to draw the attention of a new generation to the power of architecture and design.”
Michael Ford’s next lecture is scheduled for November 6, 2015 at Kent State University and is sponsored by Cleveland’s chapters of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA).
About the Lecturer
Michael Ford was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. He received his Master’s in Architecture from University of Detroit Mercy's School of Architecture. Ford has worked as a designer at Detroit based Hamilton Anderson Associates and as an adjunct professor in University of Detroit's School of Architecture. He also has an architecture blog, www.brandnudesign.com which is dedicated to his research on Hip Hop Architecture.