"From Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five rapping in their 1982 classic “New York New York” about “Staring at a skyscraper reaching into heaven / When over in the ghetto I’m livin’ in hell,” to Jay Z rhyming on 2017’s “Marcy Me” that “I’m from Marcy Houses, where the boys die by the thousand,” hip-hop has always had an intimate relationship with the architecture of cities. But what if the low-income youth of color who live in the ghettos and housing projects of Gotham — or Los Angeles or Detroit — had the technical know-how to redesign their hometowns and create buildings that serve their communities?Read More
On the final day of AIA Conference on Architecture 2017, a panel of innovators and a famed behavioral scientist took the stage in Orlando with a theme of "Anticipate Change," addressing what's next for architecture and design's evolution.
The panel, led by Frances Anderton, host of DnA: Design and Architecture, featured Michael Ford, Assoc. AIA; Cheryl McAfee, FAIA; and Nóra Demeter, Intl. Assoc. AIA, all speaking to the opportunities at architecture's frontier. "The theme today should be called 'affect change,' because each of these designers is really trying, and achieving, to steer the profession in new directions in terms of access and architectural expression itself," Anderton said.Read More
Ford is currently helping lead a design justice movement around that idea. He’s also working as the lead architect for the forthcoming Universal Hip Hop Museum, which he calls “the first representation of hip-hop architecture in the world.” In February, Ford launched a hip-hop architecture youth camp in Madison, Wisconsin, where city youth worked with city planners on the Imagine Madison city comprehensive plan. He hopes to replicate that in other cities this year.Read More
Diversity is good for business. According to a McKinsey & Company report, U.S. public companies with diverse executive boards have a 95 percent higher return on equity than those without. Bullock echoes this point: “A firm will be more financially successful if it has more women and people of color as part of its workforce.”
Firms can remain relevant, foster innovation, come up with better solutions for the communities they serve, and improve their bottom line by taking concrete steps to create a culture that fosters diversity in architecture. “Diversity and inclusion does not happen by itself,” Bullock says.Read More
The energy for week one of the innovative Hip-Hop Architecture Camp at the Madison Central Library was going to be tough to beat, but week two was lively and spirited in its own right as area youth came together to explore architecture, urban planning, and economic development through the lens of hip-hop culture while simultaneously aligning with the City of Madison’s Planning Department’s mission to gather and use opinions of each and every Madisonian to update the City’s 20-Year Comprehensive Plan.