Being multi-, inter- and trans-disciplinary is a distinctive characteristic of architecture and all design practices. Starting with the program (or problem definition), through design conception, development and construction, all the way to accommodation, architectural practice inevitably and essentially necessitates the involvement and integration of a wide range of disciplines. It is hard to think of any other practice that involves as many disciplines as architecture does. Yet, we still feel the need to discuss the importance of interdisciplinarity, to emphasize the necessity of incorporating interdisciplinary strategies while talking about its education. Why interdisciplinarity? Why now?

Here, I argue that a critical assessment of the current models of architecture education and the need for adopting a fresh look leads us to go back to its basic premises, and to rethinking what architectural practice is. I suggest a reorganization of architecture education around themes, topics, issues and values that cut across the disciplines, instead of the current fragmentation through courses that focus on disciplines as discrete chunks of knowledge. Essentially, what I suggest is using the ‘act of design’, or design practice as a model to restructure the education of design.

29 April Wednesday, 14:30
İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design

Guzden Varinlioglu's photo.

Zuhal Ulusoy graduated with B.Arch and M.Arch. degrees from the Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey. Receiving a Fulbright scholarship, she continued her graduate studies in the School of Architecture at Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, PA, USA), where she completed her M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in architecture and urban regeneration. In 1992, Dr. Ulusoy joined Bilkent University (Ankara, Turkey) as the Founding Chairperson of the Lands

cape Architecture and Urban Design Department. She was a visiting professor at Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Architecture in 2003-2004, where she taught senior level design studio and a course on housing. In 2005 she joined the newly founded Architecture Department of Izmir University of Economics. Since 2008, she has been working at Kadir Has University, Istanbul, Turkey, as the Dean of Faculty of Art and Design, and a faculty member in the

Architecture Department. She also serves in the Administrative Board of the Istanbul Studies Center at Kadir Has University. Her research interests include urban studies, particularly urban regeneration and transformation, as well as design education at various levels. Her articles and chapters on these areas have been published in various refereed journals and in books. She has taught courses on urban design, concepts in architecture, took part in foundation design studios and urban design studios, and supervised Master’s and Ph.D. theses.


The transition from craft to mechanic production over the first half of the twentieth century led to an aesthetic crisis, in Herbert Marcuse’s words, the division of ‘thought and action’, ‘conception and execution’, ‘hand and mind’, in several disciplines, including the field of architecture. Architectural discourse, theory and practice today have to additionally deal with a new crisis arising from the encounter with digital media. The role of computers in the more creative aspects of architectural design is still however, limited and the promise of digital tools heralding a new era in our ways of designing is far from being realized. There has been huge gap between what is theoretically possible with computation and current practice; between the potential of digital media and actual usage by architects. On one hand architecture has seen the widespread adoption of computer aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacturing (CAM) as representation tools in the last 2 decades. On the other hand, conventional methodologies such as sketching and model making are still crucial in architecture education. Related to this crisis, Sema Alaçam argues that aesthetic dimensions of bodily experience is one of the key concepts in the effort to get a deeper understanding of today’s crisis and gain insight about future directions of digital design environments. In her talk she will discuss the potentials of imperfective encounters between architecture students and the unexplored digital.

29 April Wednesday, 11:00
İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design

Guzden Varinlioglu's photo.

Dr. Sema Alaçam is an architect and a lecturer at Istanbul Technical University (ITU), Faculty of Architecture, Department of Architecture. She received her Bachelor of Architecture degree from ITU in 2005 and Master of Architecture degree from Architectural Design Computing graduate program of ITU in 2008

She attended Hyperbody Research Group Studies in TU Delft, Netherlands during 2006. Receved her PhD in 2014, she was among the first generation PhD students at the Architectural Design Computing Graduate Program in Graduate School of Science Engineering and Technology, Department of Informatics of ITU where she also worked as a research and teaching assistant between 2007 and 2014. She worked at ETH Zurich, Department of Architecture, Chair of Structural Design in 2013-2014 during her PhD studies as an academic guest. Both her master and PhD research studies have been supported by BAP-ITU(Scientific and Projects-ITU) and TUBITAK (Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey) under the number of 2210, 2211 and 2214-A.

Apart from the undergraduate architectural design studio, she teaches various graduate courses related to the computational design and fabrication approaches in architecture. She has numerous papers presented and printed in national and international conferences.


Since the early nineties, virtual reconstructions are part of the architectural education in the department Information and Communication Technologies in Architecture at the Technische Universität Darmstadt (Germany). In an interdisciplinary cooperation with the department of art history numerous projects were carried out. A lot of them were shown in exhibitions in Germany. The possibility that their work would be part of a professional exhibition was a great motivation for the students.

In the speech Marc Grellert will show a selection of the work in Darmstadt and talk about the potentials, the procedures and the different forms of presentation of virtual reconstructions. A focus will be the transformation of virtual models into physical models through rapid prototyping.

29 April Wednesday, 11:30
İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design


Dr. Marc Grellert teaches in the Department Digital Design[1] and is co-founder of the company Architectura Virtualis[2]. The focus of his research and work are virtual reconstructions, remembrance and conveying of knowledge with the help of digital media as well as development and realization of installations and exhibits for museums.
At Darmstadt University Marc Grellert has led numerous national and international research projects in the context of Virtual Reconstruction e.g. the Vatican Palace in Rome, the Moscow Kremlin, Emperor Tombs in Xi’an“(China, Terracotta Warriors), Temples of the Khmer in Cambodia, Ephesus (Turkey), Cristal Palace in London or 2013 the History of the Cathedral in Florence. The results were shown in large exhibitions.

[1] http://www.dg.architektur.tu-darmstadt.de/…/projekte_22.de.…

[2] www.architectura-virtualis.de


The talk will focus on the relationship between academia and practice within the current paradigm of computational design (or rather Systems Theory). Over the last decades the 3rd industrial revolution has had a sweeping impact on society. The Architectural profession has not been immune and is dealing with both theoretical and technological changes. There is a willingness amongst the “leading” thinkers of the profession not to repeat the previous late reactions to the new conditions.
Architecture, and design, is a “trade” profession and needs to maintain a connection to the profession to stay relevant. Have design schools responded to the changing professional environment? As Bauhaus was a response to the Modernistic reaction to the 2nd Industrialization, where is the school responding to the 3rd?

29 April Wednesday, 12.00
İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design


Gudjon Thor Erlendsson is the founder and principal of AUDB a London based architectural office. For the last 5 years he has worked as an architect and University lecturer at the Architectural Department at the Izmir University of Economics. Gudjon graduated from the Architectural Association in London in 1999. Since then he has been practicing as an architect as well as being engaged in research and high profile projects and collaborations, such as the ‘Landscraper Inhabitable Bridge’ with Ocean. Previously he has been a visiting tutor at the Academy of Arts in Iceland and lectured at Lund University Sweden amongst others.

Gudjon Thor Erlendsson BA(Hons) AA(Dipl) RIBA Gudjon’s work has been published widely and he has won national and international awards for his work. In 2014 he collaborated in the “Think Micro” modular floating dock project which was exhibited and the 2nd Istanbul Biennal and won the second price in the UN Habitad and Guardian “World Cities Day Challenge”.


Recent developments in architectural discourse mark a radical shift in focus. While such discourse was centered around the theme of criticality and meaning until the beginning of the 21st century, recent emphasis is on efficacy and production. I argue that the two trends are not necessarily mutually exclusive and the locus of architectural creativity lies at the realization that the architectural product is always already a historically determined cultural product.

29 April Wednesday, 10:30
İzmir University of Economics, Faculty of Fine Arts and Design


Prof. Gülsüm Baydar received her Ph.D. degree in architectural history at the University of California, Berkeley. She taught design, history and theory courses at universities in the US, Singapore, Australia and Turkey. She is presently the chair of the Architecture Department at Yaşar University, İzmir. Her work lies at the intersections between architectural and other discourses including psychoanalytical, postcolonial and feminist theories in order to explore the boundaries of the architectural discipline. Her articles appeared in such leading journals as Assemblage, Journal of Architectural Education, Society and Space, Signs, and Gender, Place and Culture. She is the co-editor of Postcolonial Space(s) (Princeton Architectural Press, 1997) and Negotiating Domesticity (Routledge, 2005).