Architects speak about their Breathable Wall

Kelsey Henninger

The architects who give walls a breath of life will be in the Michael Schwartz Center today at 7:30 p.m.

David Benjamin and Soo-in Yang will speak about their development of responsive architecture.

They construct things that can be applied to benefit architecture, said Rachel Schad, fourth year architecture major and co-organizer of the 2008 spring lecture series.

The Living Wall does not run off motors or technology. This gill-like surface opens when it senses a large amount of carbon dioxide.

“We are very excited that they are coming to Kent, and we really hope it is a beneficial experience for all that attend,” said Kelly Provot, fourth year architecture major and co-organizer of the 2008 spring lecture series.

Benjamin and Yang, from the New York firm The Living, based their development off questions like “What if architecture produced its own energy?” and “What if architecture responded to you?”

“They are not constrained by anything. They take on projects that are non-architectural,” said Jacob Chandler, fourth year architecture major and president of the American Institute of Architecture Students.

“Our hope was to bring speakers who will interest not only architecture students, but also students in a broad range of studies, including design, art, technology and science,” Provot said.

“The nature of their studio is different,” Schad said. “They explore topics so fast.”

Their work is explored through the rapid development of fully functional prototypes and integrates science, technology and design.

Their environmentally-conscience design monitors the quality of air or water and in some cases are energy self-sufficient.

The 2008 spring lecture series will not be sponsored by the Undergraduate Student Senate like in the past. Professor Jonathan Fleming received funding through the generous sponsorship of the Akron Chapter of the Construction Specifications Institute and Kent’s College of Architecture and Environmental Design, Provot said.

“We are optimistic about the success of this lecture series,” Provot said. “We hope to work with the Undergraduate Student Senate in the future.”

Contact College of Architecture and Interior Design reporter

Kelsey Henninger at [email protected].