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Architect Shelley McNamara: “You can’t be an architect without being optimistic” | Louisiana Channel

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www.youtube.com – – 2023-09-05 09:00:24

SUMMARY: The content discusses the need for architecture to adapt and change in response to current pressures, such as climate change, war, consumerism, and inequality. The speaker emphasizes the importance of architects being inventive and agile in their practices, and highlights the role of beauty, equality, and community in architecture. The content also mentions the value of collaboration with other disciplines, the humanistic aspect of architecture, and the importance of creating welcoming spaces. Overall, the content emphasizes the versatility and potential of architecture in addressing various issues and creating positive change.

“We are constantly challenging norms and accepted conventions.”

Meet Pritzker-Prize Laureate Shelley McNamara, who, together with Yvonne Farrell, is behind Grafton Architects from Dublin, Ireland.

“I think what is very interesting about the current discussion is how inventive architecture needs to be. And how agile and quickly we as professionals and teachers can respond to these pressures.”

Living in “terrifying times” with various crises, Shelley McNamara here explains what she describes as the geography of hope:

“Some people might say we architects are naïve. But we are great believers in human invention. We are great believers in the capacity of architecture to change things. We teach. We see young people researching on how to make buildings in different ways and how to think in different ways about landscape, about the resources, about water, about solar energy. I mean, there are all kinds of amazing things happening.”

“You have to challenge our thinking as architects. But I suppose it is also important to have a sense of belief and optimism. In a way, you can't be an architect without being optimistic. You are making something that is going to happen tomorrow. It is not there today, so you are thinking about the future… It's about humanism in the end.”

Shelley McNamara (b. 1952) is an Irish architect and academic. She attended University College Dublin and graduated in 1974 with a Bachelor of Architecture. Together with Yvonne Farrell, she founded Grafton Architects in 1978. Both of them have been teaching architecture at University College Dublin since 1976, as well as at several other universities. Their international academic roles have included: Visiting Professors at EPFL Lausanne, the Kenzo Tange Chair at GSD Harvard, the Louis Kahn Chair at Yale, and Visiting Professors at the Accademia di Architettura, Mendrisio, Switzerland. They are Fellows of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland (RIAI), International Honorary Fellows of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and elected members of Aosdána, the eminent Irish art organisation.

Grafton Architects is an international architecture studio based in Dublin, Ireland. From this base, the practice has completed many significant and prestigious buildings in Ireland and internationally. With projects spanning from Milford to Milan and from Lima to London. Grafton Architects embeds each project within its unique context.

In 2020, the practice directors Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara received the Pritzker Prize, considered the highest honour in the architectural profession. Grafton Architects were also laureates of the Royal Gold Medal in 2020, the Royal Institute of British Architects' highest honour. Grafton Architects received the Royal Institute of Architects of Ireland (RIAI) Gandon Medal for Lifetime Achievement in Architecture in 2020, as well as the RIAI Gold Medal for Bocconi University in Milan in 2019. The project for UTEC in Lima received the inaugural RIBA International Prize in 2016. In 2008, the project for Bocconi University was awarded the inaugural World Building of the Year award at the World Architecture Festival. Grafton Architects was also awarded the Silver Lion at the Venice Biennale 2012 entitled Common Ground for their exhibition “Architecture as New Geography”.

Farrell and McNamara were selected as curators for the Venice Biennale 2018, the most significant architecture festival in the world. They chose the theme of FREESPACE, a theme that evokes a generosity of spirit and the free gifts that architecture can offer. Farrell and McNamara have received many accolades, including the Thomas Jefferson Medal in Architecture from the University of Virginia and the Ulysses Medal from University College Dublin. In April 2022, it was announced that Kingston University London – Town House won the EU Prize for Contemporary Architecture, the Mies Van der Rohe Award 2022.

Shelley McNamara was interviewed by Marc-Christoph Wagner in July 2023. The interview took place in connection with the World Congress of Architects, UIA 2023, in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Camera: David Schweiger
Edited by: Jarl Therkelsen Kaldan
Produced by: Marc-Christoph Wagner
Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2023

Louisiana Channel is supported by Den A.P. Møllerske Støttefond, Ny Carlsbergfondet and C.L. Davids Fond og Samling. This film is supported by Dreyersfond and Fritz Hansen.

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Episode 218: The Kidnapping of Carrie Lawson

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www.youtube.com – – 2024-06-13 11:11:37

SUMMARY: Southern Fraud True Crime warns listeners about explicit content. The explores cases like Carrie Lawson's kidnapping in Jasper, Alabama— a close-knit community with a population around 14,000. Carrie, from a wealthy and philanthropic family, married Earl Lawson, also from an esteemed local family, in 1990. In September 1991, the couple was deceived into leaving their home, whereupon Carrie was abducted. Despite a ransom payment and extensive FBI efforts, which included tracking, failed ransom drops, and a corrupted wire-tap, Carrie remained missing. Significant media attention and public searches ensued. The case, laden with FBI blunders, remains unresolved, turning Carrie Lawson into a symbol of Jasper's ongoing quest for justice.

In the wee hours of September 11, 1991, Earl and Carrie Lawson were awoken by an urgent phone call from a woman claiming to be a nurse who said Earl's father was hospitalized and might not make it through the night. The couple threw on clothes and rushed out the door, only to be stopped by a masked man as they were getting in their Ford Explorer. He bound Earl with duct tape, then forced 25 year-old Carrie into the Explorer and raced off into the darkness. Their families were shocked to discover this was a kidnapping for ransom. It seemed like something you only saw in movies…but it was very real and they were terrified for Carrie. 

Hosted and produced by Erica Kelley
Researched and written by Erica Kelley & Andrea Marshbank
Original Graphic Art by Coley Horner
Original Music by Rob Harrison of Gamma Radio
Edited and Mixed by Brandon Schexnayder & Erica Kelley
Suggested by Nocturnal Druid, Reagan Williams and Amanda

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Writer Maria Stepanova: Advice to the Young | Louisiana Channel

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www.youtube.com – – 2024-06-13 09:30:22

SUMMARY: If I were to offer advice to young writers or people, I'd emphasize the lost skill of looking into the future with hope. Although it is challenging and we're often uncertain about wanting to face the future, it's beneficial to foster a desire for the unknown. This ability to anticipate and embrace what we do not yet know is crucial for the writing process. Therefore, my advice to young writers is to cultivate hope and curiosity about the future as an integral part of their creative journey.

In this short , Russian writer and journalist Maria Stepanova encourages emerging writers to focus on hope, even though it might seem difficult.

Maria Stepanova's multifaceted career spans various genres and forms, including poetry, essays, and novels. She is widely recognized for her literary and journalistic contributions that explore themes of memory, history, and identity.

When offering advice to young writers, she hesitates, because she never gives any advice. Still, she says:
“Maybe, the most important thing and he skill we have lost during the last couple of decades is an ability to look into the future with some degree of hope.”

She is not sure whether we want to get into the future, “but maybe we can ask ourselves to try wanting it” and look forward to something unknown, which, she adds, is an essential part of the writing process.

Maria Stepanova, born in 1972, is a Russian poet, essayist and journalist. She is the author of more than 10 collections of poetry. ‘War of the Beasts and Animals' came in the US in 2021 along with ‘The Voice Over' (2021), which includes a selection of Stepanova's poetry and essays originally published in Russia between 1996 and 2016. In Russia she has received many important literary prizes, including the Pasternak Prize and the Andrei Bely Prize in 2005, and the Moscow Account Prize in 2006, 2009, and 2018. Stepanova's work has been translated into English, Hebrew, Spanish, Italian, German, Finnish, French, Danish, and other languages. In 2021 ‘In Memory of Memory' was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. Stepanova was appointed Siegfried-Unseld Guest Professor at Humboldt Universität in Berlin in 2018–2019. In 2007, Stepanova founded Openspace.ru, an online magazine dedicated to Russian-language arts and culture. She served as editor-in-chief of Openspace.ru until 2012, when she left the publication along with the majority of her editorial staff due to a withdrawal of funding from private investors. Stepanova disagreed with investor oversight amid the uncertain Russian political landscape; this droves her to found Colta.ru, the first Russian media outlet supported entirely by crowdfunding, providing Stepanova more editorial freedom as editor-in-chief.

Lotte Folke Kaarsholm interviewed Maria Stepanova in August 2022 in connection with the Louisiana Literature festival at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Denmark.

Camera: Rasmus Quistgaard
Edit: Signe Boe Pedersen
Produced by Christian Lund

Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2024
Louisiana Channel is supported by Den A.P. Møllerske Støttefond, Ny Carlsbergfondet, C.L. Davids Fond og Samling and Fritz Hansen.

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“Even Bad Art is Good” | A Visit to Ryan Gander’s Studio | Louisiana Channel

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www.youtube.com – – 2024-06-11 09:30:09

SUMMARY: An artist describes their creative space and various projects. They detail a painting of a scratched slide, an animatronic mosquito sculpture, and their process of organizing ideas using photographs and notes. The studio, once a sports center, now serves as an art haven. The artist enjoys the freedom akin to art school days. They adopt multiple fictional personas for their work, creating diverse pieces and fictional exhibitions as a form of therapy. Their studio includes a shop and hosts local school visits. Outside the building, ambiguous signage adds intrigue, and a unique resin tent sculpture creates a whimsical display.

“This studio is a bit like heaven because it's like going to art school again.”

We visited British artist Ryan Gander in his studio in Suffolk. Once a sports and leisure centre, Gander's studio is now a home for playful artistic experimentation and collections of curious objects, each with its own story.

A walk through the studio reveals a series of items, from Japanese novelty goods to tiny Christmas crackers displayed in a vending machine in alphabetical order. “That's a Japanese masturbation tool for men. And then down the bottom we've got marijuana, which is illegal in this country. You can totally get raided, although the weed seems to run out really quickly,” Gander remarks, his tone a blend of humor and candidness.

His studio walls are lined with photographs and post-it notes, each representing a nascent artwork. “People always say: You have so many ideas. I don't have any more ideas than anybody else in the world. It's just that I write them all down and stick them on the wall,” he explains. This systematic approach ensures a steady flow of creativity, transforming mundane moments into profound artistic statements.

Among the highlights of the visit is a new painting inspired by his parents' 35mm slides. “For me, this is like the perfect painting for my practice because it's basically an image. But the image again is in the viewer's head,” he notes. This painting, like much of his work, invites viewers to complete the narrative, emphasizing art's interactive and subjective nature.

Gander's reflections extend beyond his studio to broader societal concerns. He discusses the role of time in appreciating art, asserting, “Art is for the privileged. It's not about the privilege of money. It's about the privilege of time. To enjoy art, you need spare time. And spare time is the greatest privilege.”

Ryan Gander (b. in 1976, Chester, England) has established an international reputation through artworks that materialize in many forms – from sculpture to film, writing, graphic design, installation, performance, and more. Gander studied at Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, NL, and the Jan van Eyck Akademie, Maastricht, NL. Gander has been a Professor of Visual Art at the University of Huddersfield and holds an honorary Doctor of the Arts at Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Suffolk. In 2017, he was awarded an OBE for services to contemporary art. In 2019, he was awarded the Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University. In 2022, he was made RA for the category of Sculpture. As well as curating exhibitions, he is a committed educator, having taught at international art institutions and universities. He has written and edited a variety of books and presented television programs on and about contemporary art and culture for the BBC. Major projects and commissions include Kunsthalle Bern, CH; Pinault Collection, Bourse de Commerce, Paris; Space K, Seoul; Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, Melbourne; Café Aubette, Strasbourg; Musée d‘art Contemporain de Montréal; Aspen Art Museum; Liverpool Biennial; Sydney Biennale; Performa, NY; High Line, NY; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; dOCUMENTA (13), Kassel; Locked Room Scenario, commissioned by Artangel, London; 54th International Art Exhibition of the Venice Biennale; Intervals at The Guggenheim Museum, NY; Public Art Fund, NY.

Ryan Gander was interviewed by Malte Fals in June 2023. took place in Ryan Gander's studio in Woodbridge, Suffolk, United Kingdom.
Camera: Jakob Solbakken
Edited by: Malte Fals
Produced by: Malte Fals and Marc-Christoph Wagner

Copyright: Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, 2023

Louisiana Channel is supported by Den A.P. Møllerske Støttefond, Ny Carlsbergfondet, and C.L. Davids Fond og Samling.

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