Yale exhibition highlights the incorporation of digital methods into architecture

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“Archaeology of the Digital: Complexity and Convention,” an exhibition that focuses on the integration of digital methods in architectural practice, will open at the Yale School of Architecture (YSoA) on Thursday, Jan. 12.

Organized by the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) and curated by Greg Lynn, who most recently served as the William B. and Charlotte Shepherd Davenport Visiting Professor in the spring of 2016, the exhibition will be on view until May 7, 2017 at YSoA’s gallery at 180 York St. It is free and open to the public Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

“Complexity and Convention,” is the third and final exhibition of the CCA’s “Archaeology of the Digital” series, in which 25 seminal projects were collected, researched, and catalogued. This program develops a curatorial reading of the incorporation of the digital into architecture and addresses the challenges of preserving digital archives and assuring their future accessibility. Other exhibitions in the series include “Archaeology of the Digital” and “Media and Machines.”

This exhibition draws from archival material from 15 projects, both built and unbuilt, by international firms in the 1990s through the 2000s. While the first two exhibitions — Archaeology of the Digital” in 2013 and “Media and Machines” in 2014 — emphasized individual projects based on their distinct and clearly defined digital approaches, in the third exhibition aspects of multiple projects are presented together. Divided into five themes — high-fidelity 3D, structure/cladding, data, photorealism and topography/topology — the exhibition offers a reading of innovative design strategies from the recent past that have now become convention.

The projects featured in Complexity and Convention” include Erasmus Bridge (Rotterdam, The Netherlands; 1990-1996) by Van Berkel & Bos Architects; Chemnitz Stadium (Chemnitz, Germany; 1995) by Peter Kulka with Ulrich Königs; O/K Apartment (New York; 1995-1997) by Kolatan/Mac Donald Studio; Yokohama International Port Terminal (Yokohama, Japan; 1995-2002) by Foreign Office Architects; Interrupted Projections (Tokyo; 1996) by Neil M. Denari Architects; Kansai National Diet Library (Kyoto, 1996) by Reiser + Umemoto; Hypo Alpe-Adria Center (Klagenfurt, Austria; 1996-2002) by Morphosis; Jyväskylä Music and Arts Center (Jyväskylä, Finland; 1997) by OCEAN North; Witte Arts Center (Green Bay, United States; 2000) by Office dA; Phaeno Science Centre (Wolfsburg, Germany; 2000-2005) by Zaha Hadid Architects; Eyebeam Atelier Museum (New York; 2001) by Preston Scott Cohen; Carbon Tower (prototype, 2001) by Testa & Weiser; BMW Welt (Munich, Germany; 2001-2007) by COOP HIMMELB(L)AU; Villa Nurbs (Empuriabrava, Spain; 2000-2015) by Cloud 9; and Water Flux (Évolène, Switzerland; 2002-2010) by R&Sie(n).

“Archaeology of the Digital: Complexity and Convention,” is made possible through the support of the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications du Québec, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Conseil des arts de Montréal, and the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. The presentation at Yale is sponsored in part by Elise Jaffe + Jeffrey Brown.

The exhibition is accompanied by a CCA publication series, including a set of digital monographs of each of the featured projects, a book published in 2013 to accompany the first Archaeology of the Digital exhibition, and a book titled “When is the Digital in Architecture?” which addresses different perspectives on how architecture engaged with digital tools. This publication series is supported by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts with additional support from Elise Jaffe + Jeffrey Brown

The Yale School of Architecture’s exhibition program is supported by the James Wilder Green Dean’s Resource Fund, the Kibel Foundation Fund, the Nitkin Family Dean’s Discretionary Fund in Architecture, the Pickard Chilton Dean’s Resource Fund, the Paul Rudolph Publication Fund, the Robert A.M. Stern Fund, the Rutherford Trowbridge Memorial Fund, the Fred Koetter Exhibitions Fund, and the School of Architecture Exhibitions Fund.

Canadian Centre for Architecture

The CCA is an international research center and museum founded on the conviction that architecture is a public concern. Based on its extensive collection, exhibitions, public programs, publications and research opportunities, the CCA is advancing knowledge, promoting public understanding, and widening thought and debate on architecture, its history, theory, practice, and role in society today.

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Media Contact

Bess Connolly : elizabeth.connolly@yale.edu,