The 17th Annual Roland Batten Memorial Lecture
Speaker: Beverly Eichenlaub
- By Simone Blaise-Glaunsinger
THE 17th ANNUAL ROLAND BATTEN MEMORIAL LECTURE
on Architecture and Design will be presented by
Tuesday, OCTOBER 25th at 6:00 P.M. in
301 WILLIAMS HALL at The University of Vermont.
The lecture is sponsored by the Roland Batten Memorial Fund, Truex/Cullens and Partners Architects, and The University of Vermont’s Department of Art and Art History.
Lessons from Detroit: Architecture as an Agent of Change
“From the moment I arrived in Michigan, I focused on the abandoned landscape. My interest was spurred by the rapid pace of depopulation and the ensuing demolition of unclaimed houses. I made work in response to the palpable history of place, installing devices to manifest memory embedded in site. I harvested forgotten fences, reconstructing these remnants to challenge cultural attitudes about material value. I inserted myself into the exurban fabric, acting now as “citizen-architect”, by acquiring and altering cheap parcels of discarded land chosen specifically for their proximity to an extinct public housing project. Here I have built a small platform – an overlook from which to view this overgrown property and nearby lake; an installation intended to defy the social stigma that clings vehemently to this beautiful land.”
– Master’s Statement Excerpt; Beverly Eichenlaub, 2014
Beverly spent two years in residence at the Cranbrook Academy of Art, conducting design research and making work in direct response to the extreme condition of the built environment in the greater Detroit area. The research and work explores the cultural construct of value related to land, land use and material, focusing on a heavily depopulated residential area of Pontiac, Michigan. The resultant body of work engages architecture as an activist platform upon which to investigate and illuminate the condition of the built environment, to provide an alternative perspective on place as a catalyst for change. Beverly will present a survey of her studies, installations, and proposals as well as a select sampling of work by other architects and designers working in the Detroit area who, in their own ways, are engaging with the soul-searching question of what it means to be an architect in a community of distress.
Beverly Eichenlaub is a principal at Premises Architecture PLLC in Plattsburgh, New York, with professional design and teaching experience in architecture, urban design, interiors and experiential graphics. She is an engaged activist, addressing issues including land use and community identity via curatorial and installation work. Beverly holds a post-professional Master of Architecture from Cranbrook Academy of Art and Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Cincinnati.
The events are free and open to the public.