Lecture to focus on the responsibility of architects


Mikinna Kerns/Iowa State Daily

The painted steel sculpture, entitled Sequence, rises from the snow Jan. 8 outside the College of Design. The sculpture was erected in 1979 by John Douglas Jennings and has become a landmark for the College of Design.  

Morrgan Zmolek

An upcoming lecture event aims to explore what architects can do to make our world a better place.

A lecture titled, “What Responsibility do Architects Have to Create a More Just World?” will be presented from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Kocimski Auditorium in 101 College of Design as a part of the college’s “Moral Imaginaries” lecture series.

This lecture is free and open to everyone, including students, faculty, staff and Ames community members.

The speaker, Lori Brown, is a professor of architecture at Syracuse University. She is also the co-founder of a nonprofit organization, ArchiteXX, which was created to shed light on women in the architecture field and provide them with support.

“Professor Brown emphasizes the role of gender and social justice within the field of architecture,” according to the Lecture Series website. “The current project being conducted by ArchiteXX is a traveling exhibition named ‘Now What?! Advocacy, Activism & Alliances in American Architecture since 1968.’”

ArchiteXX and Brown have also worked on projects such as #wikiD in association with two other like international groups from Germany and Australia. This project aims to get more women architects written into Wikipedia pages about the field.

Brown is also the author of “Feminist Practices: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Women in Architecture,” a collective work from a team of women in architecture and design that use the ideologies and practices associated with feminism in their work and projects and “Contested Spaces: Abortion Clinics, Women’s Shelters and Hospitals,” which dives into the affect of legislation and the First Amendment on those places.

Brown is at work on the book ”Borders and Bodies” and co-editing the “Bloomsbury Global Encyclopedia of Women in Architecture 1960-2015” with Karen Burns, an architectural historian and theorist based in Melbourne, Australia.

In 2016 she received a Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation Leadership Award for her work increasing recognition of gender inequities in the building industry. Brown is a registered architect in the state of New York and prior to teaching, she worked as an architect for several award-winning firms in New York City.