ArchEx 2019: Future Zone

This year, we’ve organized our carefully-curated program for Architecture Exchange East into learning zones. You can pick and choose sessions from any of the zones or do a deep dive into a particular theme.

Join us in our Future Zone to find out what’s on the horizon for the profession. Discover the latest research, emerging technologies, and trends.

View the complete agenda or register online today. The Early Bird discount ends on Sept. 18.


101: Floating Communities: Cultural Shift to Living ON the Water
Floating communities are environmentally sound, socially focused, and a wellness living environment second to none.  Michael Winstanley AIA AICP and Leejung Hong LEED AP will present their vision and plans for a series of floating communities ranging from a small community of 25 homes in an existing urban marina in downtown Washington, DC to a large 84 home new community in Woodbridge.  The proposed plans document a net-zero development of homes ranging from 1,500 gsf to 3,000 gsf each constructed on a concrete “float” foundation in a remote location and brought in by barge an assembled to create a vibrant and integrated community.  Power, water, and sewage are all part of the discussion as well as common facility and shore-based support functions.

201: Moon Base: Designing a Lunar Village
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), in partnership with the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has released the conceptual design for the first full-time human habitat on the lunar surface, called “Moon Village.” Learn about the proposed concept and hear how the team had to consider entirely new challenges, such radiation protection, pressure differentials, and how to provide breathable air.

301: Virtual Reality and the University of Virginia Hospital Expansion
The University Hospital Expansion project (UHE) is a 14-story, 440,000 square-foot patient-tower currently under construction at the University of Virginia. Seeing the value of the use of Virtual Reality during project design, the on-site team decided to set the challenge of finding a way to use VR during construction administration. Through this presentation, the design team will share their journey over the last 5 years of software exploration and the ever evolving use of technology during construction.


411: Technologies for Inclusion
Computational design and digital fabrication technologies—including robotics—have afforded new potential for all design disciplines. Global architecture and design discourse continue to profess the potential of ‘emerging’ design technologies and fabrication methods as the drivers of the future of creating buildings. Computational design, collaboration, project management, and fabrication technologies have enabled projects to happen faster while utilizing global supply chains, global labor and universal methods, often without respect for impact—both positive and negative, in the short and long term, on local communities, economies, environments, and culture. In opposition are amazing stories emerging from the discourse surrounding the Architect as an inclusive creator. Often as one-offs or special projects outside of the normal practice, these altruistic endeavors rarely result in sustained solutions with systemic impact. In this dichotomy, we have people that make buildings at a pace to meet global demand and in opposition we have people that make buildings that meet local and regional human needs, through processes that empower—a healthy framework for discourse but the practical reality is that development is outpacing altruism at an alarming pace.

To meet global demand while also empowering local communities we must find ways to leverage the same design technologies that are allowing the global construction industry to thrive, to enable collaboration, engagement across stakeholders, find new ways of working, and to reinvent the value proposition of design. Through a series of examples from the Center for Design Research at Virginia Tech, this talk will explore ways in which design and construction technologies help us do more, better and faster, while enhancing the human experience by enabling inclusive processes.

501: Goldilocks and the Power of Ten
Scientists are providing greater and greater access to the design of materials at super-small scales. This talk will provide case studies that explore how designers can make, size, and apply these new materials to orchestrate the flow of energy through buildings in novel and efficient ways.

601: Emerging Leaders in Architecture Session
Celebrate the achievements of the 2019 Emerging Leaders in Architecture and hear about this year’s class project. Dramatic changes in technology and workplace behavior has contributed to an excess of vacant office space, with Northern Virginia approaching a 20% vacancy rate. This year, the Emerging Leaders in Architecture class identifies strategies and creative interventions that revitalize these structures to provide space and amenities that contribute to their local communities.

701: [yaf]CON
[yaf]CON aims to unite and connect members of YAF chapters in Virginia through a mindfully curated micro-conference intended to forge connections and advance the careers of attendees.

ArchEx 2019: Inspiration Zone

This year, we’ve organized our carefully-curated program for Architecture Exchange East into learning zones. You can pick and choose sessions from any of the zones or do a deep dive into a particular theme.

The Inspiration Learning Zone at ArchEx 2019 offers 9 sessions to help you find inspiration in new work and creative approaches. Check them out below or review the full agenda. Registration for ArchEx is now open.


100: Introduction to Cultural Landscapes
Cultural landscapes are places that have acquired significance through interactions between people and the land; they may surround one or more historic buildings or be significant sites in their own right. Interest in Cultural Landscape Reports (CLRs), the landscape counterparts of Historic Structure Reports (HSRs), is on the rise among stewards of historic places who seek a deeper understanding of their site. Get an introduction to the key issues in the analysis of cultural landscapes.

200: Transforming Office Culture: Parkitectural Expression
Where do you spend most of your “awake hours?” For most of us it is at the office … so why not make it a “LIVING OFFICE” that supports the way you live, work, collaborate and play! The City of Virginia Beach Parks and Recreation Department had been deprived of a new administrative facility for decades and entrusted the presenters to bring them a fresh new definition of the workplace for their staff.

300: Creating a Culture of Integrative Design
A firm’s commitment to the 2030 Challenge helped transform a design culture to embrace high-performance design using an integrative design process. Recognizing that clients do not always want an official sustainability certification, the presenters worked to embed an integrative design process into the culture utilizing a network of sustainable design leaders, early and more energy modeling, and a more metric-driven design process. They’ll review the strategies that helped transform the culture to help enhance the firm’s design process to meet projects’ energy, water, habitat, and material sustainability goals.


410: Architectural Ethnography as a Learning Tool in Study Abroad
How could study abroad programs for architects teach cultural empathy? Drawing from on-site observation of buildings raises questions that help us understand cultural forces that shapes architecture. For example, why do wood lattices conceal Kyoto’s machiya storefronts instead of revealing the interior with an expansive window? Such question may uncover why contemporary Japanese architecture take on forms different from the western counterparts. The presenter demonstrates how architectural ethnography in study abroad programs can deepen cultural understanding.

500: How Drawings Work: A User Friendly Theory
Pulling from a diverse and eclectic landscape of theories from grammar, functional linguistics, philosophy, art criticism, science fiction, popular culture, and, of course, architecture, Susan Piedmont-Palladino proposes a new way to think about architectural communication and how drawings really work.

600: The Work of Joeb Moore & Partners
Joeb Moore & Partners is an architecture and design firm known for its intellect in design, craftsmanship, inventive formal and spatial systems, and details. The practice specializes in precise and creative buildings, landscapes, and furnishings that sensitively respond to their environment and ecologies of place. Hear from principal Joeb Moore, FAIA about the firm’s approach to residential design.

700: The Work of Ann Beha Architects
Hear about the work of Ann Beha Architects. The firm seeks a dynamic discourse between heritage and the future. With an equal emphasis on contemporary architectural expression and the revitalization of historic resources, their projects shape and strengthen community life, establish new directions, identities, and vibrant settings for education, the arts, and the civic realm.

800: AIA Virginia’s Design Awards Session
See the winning projects from AIA Virginia’s Design Awards program. Discuss the jury’s comments and hear insights from the jury chair.

900: Pecha Kucha: The Best Darn Thing I’ve Ever Done
Four presenters will have 6 minutes and 40 seconds to tell us about the best d@mn thing they’ve ever done as a designer. We’ve built some time in for discussion at the end. Join us for this dynamic session to wrap up your ArchEx experience.

About Architecture Exchange East
ArchEx is AIA Virginia’s annual conference and expo. This year, it takes place at the Greater Richmond Convention Center from Nov. 6–8, 2019. The program is curated to bring together the brightest minds and most engaging speakers to explore the theme of culture.

Register online.

Registration Open for ArchEx 2019

I don’t know about you, but the anticipation has been killing us. Registration is now (finally!) open for Architecture Exchange East 2019 — one of the largest and most exciting annual gatherings of architects and design professionals in the mid-Atlantic.

ArchEx 2019 features dozens of educational sessions, spectacular behind-the-scenes architectural tours, engaging special events, and more than 60 vendors in the ArchEx Exhibit Hall — all organized around our theme of re:culture. Check out the complete agenda. (View as a PDF)

This year, during the Early Bird registration period, we’ve frozen registration fees. Register today to secure your tickets at last year’s best price – but don’t delay. Early Bird registration ends Sept. 18. Check out all the registration options and fees.

Keynote Speakers

Our general session features three keynote speakers. We kick off with an opening talk by Dwayne Oyler from Oyler Wu Collaborative. The firm has been published globally and widely recognized for its excellence in architectural design, research, and fabrication. Learn about the firm’s approach to fostering creativity and collaboration, and then hear about their experimentation around fabrication and 3D printing — including their LACE line of products.

Then, hear from Pascale Sablan, AIA. She’s a Senior Associate at S9ARCHITECTURE as well as the Founder and Executive Director of Beyond the Built Environment. Pascale is the 315th living African American woman in the United States to attain her architectural license. She was recently appointed to AIA New York’s Board of Directors and to the AIA National Strategic Planning Committee. Pascale was named one of 25 Young Architects to Watch in 2019 by Architizer and recognized with the 2018 AIA Young Architects Award. She is an architect, mentor, intrapreneur and a passionate advocate for bringing visibility and voice to the issues concerning minority designers. 

The general session wraps up with an address by Patricia Gruits, Senior Principal and Managing Director of MASS Design Group. Gruits leads both design and research projects in health, education, and equity. Since joining MASS in 2013, she has led the design of the Maternity Waiting Village in Malawi with the Malawi Ministry of Health, a series of primary schools in East Africa with the African Wildlife Foundation and the M2 Foundation, and is currently leading the development of an assessment tool to measure the impact of design and infrastructure investments.

Prior to joining MASS, Patricia worked with Kennedy & Violich Architecture in Boston and co-founded the global non-profit, Portable Light, which provides a portable and sustainable source of power and light to those in resource limited areas of the world. Her work has been featured in journals of architecture and design as well as on the BBC World News and the Discovery Channel.

About the Program

This year, we’ve organized our carefully-curated program into learning zones. You can pick and choose sessions from any of the zones or do a deep dive into a particular theme.  Check out descriptions of learning zones below or see the seminar titles in a grid.

The Inspiration Zone: In this zone, you’ll attend design-focused sessions that are intended to recharge your creative batteries.

The Future Zone: In this zone, you’ll discover emerging technologies, methods, and research and find out what’s on the horizon for the profession.

The HSW Zone: In this zone, you’ll focus on health, safety, and welfare – and earn up to 15 HSW learning units.

The Practice Zone: In this zone, you’ll discuss practice management methods and explore the topic of firm culture.

The History/Community Zone: In this zone, you’ll hear case studies, discuss preservation, and deliberate the power of building community.

The Public Work/Good Zone: In this zone, you’ll discuss the opportunities (and challenges) of engaging in public work as well as the benefits of working for the public good.

The Crowd Sourced Zone: In this zone, you suggested the sessions, we invited the speakers.

About Architecture Exchange East

ArchEx is AIA Virginia’s annual conference and expo. This year, it takes place at the Greater Richmond Convention Center from Nov. 6–8, 2019. The program is curated to bring together the brightest minds and most engaging speakers to explore the theme of culture.

AIA Richmond Sporting Clays Challenge Registration

AIA Richmond

Patricia Gruits with MASS Design Group to Speak at ArchEx 2019

AIA Virginia is pleased to announce that Patricia Gruits with the non-profit firm MASS Design Group will be a keynote speaker at Architecture Exchange East (ArchEx). In keeping with the theme of re:culture, she’ll share her approach to working with communities as well as the story behind the firm’s culture during the ArchEx General Session on Thursday, Nov. 7, 2019 in Richmond, Va.

About Patricia Gruits
Patricia Gruits is a Director with MASS Design Group leading both design and research projects in health, education, and equity. Since joining MASS in 2013, she has led the design of the Maternity Waiting Village in Malawi with the Malawi Ministry of Health, a series of primary schools in East Africa with the African Wildlife Foundation and the M2 Foundation, and is currently leading the development of an assessment tool to measure the impact of design and infrastructure investments.

Ruhehe Primary School
The redesign of Ruhehe Primary School offers the first proof of concept for design interventions piloted by MASS Design Group at Mubuga Primary School in 2015. Photo by Iwan Baan.

Prior to joining MASS, Patricia worked with Kennedy & Violich Architecture in Boston and co-founded the global non-profit, Portable Light, which provides a portable and sustainable source of power and light to those in resource limited areas of the world. 

Her work has been featured in journals of architecture and design as well as on the BBC World News and the Discovery Channel. She has lectured at SCAD, RISD, Kunstfack University, Tufts University and BuildBoston and has taught design studios at Northeastern University and the Rhode Island School of Design. Patricia received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Architecture from the University of Michigan.

About MASS Design Group
The Boston-based MASS Design Group is organized as a 501(c)(3) non-profit to create a model of practice optimized to deliver maximum impact to their  partners and the communities they serve. They take on projects that are mission-aligned, that serve the public, and that their board of directors believes are worthy of consideration.

About Architecture Exchange East
ArchEx is AIA Virginia’s annual conference and expo. This year, it takes place at the Greater Richmond Convention Center from Nov. 6–8, 2019. The program is curated to bring together the brightest minds and most engaging speakers to explore the theme of culture.


  1. What is the AIA Virginia PAC?
    The AIA Virginia Political Action Committee (PAC) is the funding vehicle used to support legislators in office and candidates seeking elected office whose policy positions support the profession of architecture and align with our Directory of Public Policies and Position Statements. Contributions to the PAC are voluntary and shall in no way be a condition of membership in AIA Virginia. The PAC is governed by its own Board of Trustees, separately from AIA Virginia’s Board of Directors. However, the Chair of the Board of Trustees is the Vice President of Government Advocacy (from AIA Virginia’s Executive Committee) as an ex-officio member. The Executive Vice President of AIA Virginia also serves on the Board of Trustees as ex-officio.

  2. Why does the organization have to give money to legislators?
    Shouldn’t legislators just do the right thing? It sounds like you are trying to buy votes.

    We will never buy votes. Investing in legislators provides access and forms partnerships. Any legislator only has so much time to balance the competing demands, priorities, and requests that are a part of their job. Often, time allocations are as follows: constituents first, then supporters, and if any time remains after priorities are complete, it is allocated to everyone else.

    Showing support for a legislator or candidate is done in one of two ways: time or money. Handing out flyers and knocking on doors to reach 140 individuals is unfeasible for an organization of our size. Therefore, we demonstrate our support through contributions, not unlike personally showing your support to a non-profit. For example, to advance the mission of Habitat for Humanity, one must either swing a hammer on site on a Saturday or make a financial contribution. This is the only way Habitat can achieve its goals and how it knows you exist as a resource.

    The same principle holds true for a legislator or a candidate running for elected office. In addition, making a contribution to attend a legislative event provides the organization an opportunity to educate legislators about what we do as architects. This is the foundation for relationship-building and establishes AIA Virginia as a resource for consulting when certain bills are introduced during the General Assembly session. Remember, the Virginia General Assembly is comprised of members of varying backgrounds, professions, experiences, and cultures. Many have no idea what architects do or why what we do is important for a community. If we don’t speak for ourselves in terms of educating legislators, then you better believe that another entity will.

  3. The PAC only focuses on procurement issues. My firm does not do public work, so the PAC is irrelevant to me and provides no value to my firm.
    The PAC benefits ALL firms. If you like the way you are allowed to practice in Virginia, then the PAC is relevant to you. We have established a positive legal framework for practicing in Virginia, and the PAC is essential to ensuring this framework continues to benefit the profession as a whole. Historically, you have heard the most about procurement for two reasons. First, many of the bills introduced in the General Assembly that have a negative impact on the profession involve procurement of design services using taxpayer dollars. Second, the AIA Virginia PAC’s historically low funding levels has allowed us to only be reactive and extinguish the “greatest fires.”

    In reality, we advocate for issues outlined in our Directory of Public Policies and Position Statements, including the following: civic engagement, resiliency, mass transit, tort reform, regulation, the business of architecture, environmental responsibility, diversity + inclusion, accessibility, housing, historic preservation, and livable communities to name a few priorities. For example, AIA Virginia was instrumental in the passing of a bill that requires all school projects to be reviewed for security and crime prevention through building design elements during the 2019 General Assembly. Since 2018, our members’ perception of the PAC has shifted, and the PAC’s value is being recognized through increased investments. This investment is allowing AIA Virginia to begin shifting to advancing many of these issues.

  4. Why is this now just coming up? The PAC has been around for some time and everything has seemed to be going alright.
    The PAC is unique in that members participate voluntarily, yet the benefits impact everyone in our profession. AIA VA’s PAC initiative is the only equitable way to fully support the many elements of advocacy. Prior to 2018, less than 3% of our membership invested in the PAC. Though this number has improved since last year, it is far from reaching a level that is meaningful and sustainable. As such, 100% of the 2020 dues increase will be transferred to the PAC unless one decides to opt-out.

    In March 2019, a survey of 2,338 AIA Virginia members and allied members garnered nearly a 20% response rate. The responses clearly indicated the value of advocacy to members. Surveys have also shown that members desire the AIA to be more instrumental in the public realm and proactively promote the value of architects and architecture. Our PAC is the first step in building relationships with policymakers and those who have influence over our profession and the built environment.

  5. I thought a portion of my dues went to Government Advocacy. Tell me again, what is this for?
    Currently, a portion of your AIA Virginia dues goes toward paying lobbyist fees and day-to-day business operations of performing advocacy. Today, no portion of your dues goes to supporting political candidates for elected office or legislators currently in office. Support of those individuals is provided through the PAC.

  6. How do you decide which candidates to support?
    The PAC Board of Trustees, which consists of AIA members, develops a Disbursement Plan using counsel from our lobbyist team at Williams Mullen. Primarily, we focus on individuals who sit on the House and Senate General Laws Committees and members of the House and Senate leadership. Many bills that impact the profession of architecture land in the General Laws Committee. This does not mean that other Committees are unimportant; we strategically contribute to members on other Committees as our available PAC member investments allow.

  7. Does the AIA Virginia PAC benefit candidates for national office or U.S. House and Senate legislators?
    No. AIA National has a PAC called ArchiPAC, which supports legislators in the U.S. House and Senate as well as candidates for national office—a completely different undertaking than the AIA Virginia PAC. The AIA Virginia PAC is used to support legislators in the Virginia House of Delegates and Virginia Senate as well as candidates for state office.

  8. How much money do you need in the PAC to be successful?
    Based on our Disbursement Plan, which targets primarily the House and Senate General Laws Committees and House and Senate leadership, a minimum of $30,000 annually is required to be impactful and proactive. As we continue to mature in the legislative arena and proactively advocate for issues in accordance with AIA VA’s Directory of Public Policies and Position Statements, more money is required annually. This is because many of those issues fall with Committees outside of General Laws.

    A meaningful contribution from an organization our size ranges from $500 to $1,500, depending on the legislator’s rank and influence. Our 2019 Disbursement Plan consists of 36 individuals and 5 caucus events. Our PAC goal for this year is $35,000. The PAC Opt-In is estimated to generate $20,000 annually. This alone is insufficient. AIA Virginia will still require additional PAC investments to be successful.

  9. Before this proposed PAC initiative, how much did the PAC generate previously?
    In 2015 and 2016, the PAC generated an amount of money equivalent to less than $1.50 per AIA Virginia member. In 2017, AIA Virginia members invested just over $6,833. In the same year, PACs representing engineers and contractors each ranged from $50,000 to $65,000. This is a factor of 10! AIA Virginia’s historic levels of PAC participation are unsustainable for ensuring the health of our profession in the state.

    In 2018, AIA Virginia developed and implemented a multi-pronged strategy to communicate the value and importance of the PAC to members. It worked! Last year, we are proud to say AIA Virginia members and firms invested nearly $22,000.

  10. Are there any other AIA state components that do this?
    Yes. However, PAC laws vary from state to state. In 2018, the Board of Directors undertook extensive research and planning to position themselves to take action this August. Part of the process included discussions with state components that allocate a portion of their dues to a PAC in a similar way such as AIA Georgia, AIA Illinois, and AIA New Jersey.

  11. You all lean a little too heavily toward one particular party for my liking. How much money did you give to Democrats vs. Republicans?
    The AIA Virginia PAC is non-partisan. Contributions to one political party may be greater than the other in any given year due to the composition of the General Laws Committees. The political party in power will have more individuals on any respective Committee [not just General Laws] and also Chair committees. As of 2019, the House and Senate are both narrowly controlled by Republicans. As such, our 2019 Disbursement Plan has allocated $15,500 to Republicans and $12,500 to Democrats.

  12. Do you support AIA members that run for state office?
    Yes, and we encourage it! In 2019, one of our members ran for the 57th District House seat. Through our PAC, we were able to invest $1,225 in this member.

  13. Do I get a check back for the amount of the dues increase if I decide not to allocate it as a PAC investment?
    By Virginia law, an organization cannot mandate that you contribute to a PAC. As such, AIA Virginia will allow those who wish to not invest in the PAC to have their dues increase go to the organization’s General Operating Fund. No rebates will be issued.

  14. Will this allocation to the PAC occur annually?
    Currently, the plan is to defer a portion of dues money to the PAC annually starting in 2020. A member will ALWAYS have the option to move that portion to the General Operating Fund instead. This allocation does not always mean dues will be raised by an established amount. For example, in the absence of a dues increase, the intent to make a PAC deferral from membership dues remains.

DPOR Introducing Digital Credentials in September

Starting in September 2019, Virginia’s Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR) will begin sending digital licenses to all regulated professionals with a registered email, allowing licensed professionals to more easily comply with the legal requirements of providing your licenses upon request.

DPOR will partner with online credentialing service Merit to provide individual licenses in their online platform that is accessible, portable, verifiable, and free of charge.

Individual licenses will be issued and used in the same way but now made accessible with a few taps on a phone or web browser. This September, you will receive an email from DPOR via so you can set up your account for continued access to your digital licenses. If you do not receive the email, please be sure to update your email address by filling out the form here:

About Merit
Merit enables organizations to securely issue and manage digital merits in order to better engage, serve, and grow their member community. Merit offers organizations and individuals a way to leverage a single secure platform to verify their personal and professional qualifications versus relying on analog siloed systems of paper certificates, ledgers, and plastic identification cards.   

Find more information about how Merit is helping licensed professionals more easily comply with their legal requirements in the Commonwealth of Virginia at

Call for ArchEx 2019 Volunteers

We’re seeking a limited number of individuals to serve as volunteers at Architecture Exchange East 2019. In gratitude for your service, volunteers are invited to attend ArchEx for free on the day(s) you help out.

We are looking for volunteers who are capable of completing a number of different tasks throughout the conference. Volunteers are expected to commit to a minimum of one full day in order to receive the complimentary conference registration.

While we try to accommodate all requests, you’ll be assigned to positions where we have the need. (You must fulfill your entire commitment to receive complimentary conference registration.)

If you are interested, please complete the Volunteer Interest Form. We’ll be in touch later to confirm the details of your participation.

Call for Entries: SAY IT LOUD VIRGINIA

AIA Virginia is also pleased to collaborate with Pascale Sablan to bring SAY IT LOUD VIRGINIA to Architecture Exchange East 2019. The exhibition features projects by the diverse design professionals that contribute to Virginia’s rich built environment. ​

​ The SAY IT LOUD series of exhibitions has been featured at A’18, South by SouthwestNOMA 2018 Unbounded, and the United Nations Visitors Center. The UN exhibition has been translated and displayed in Bujumbura, Geneva, Harare, Lagos, Lome, Nairobi, New Delhi, Minsk and Yaounde.

To date, SAY IT LOUD exhibitions have been viewed by an estimated total 27,000 visitors since January 2017. From inception, multiple online publications (such as Curbed and The Architects Newspaper) with large subscription bases have helped promote the exhibitions further expanding its impact.

Entry Fees:
Early Bird Submission:  Aug. 25, 2019 ($100)
Standard Submission: Sept. 29, 2019 ($150)

Entry Deadline: Sept. 29, 2019 11:59 (EST) 

Learn More.

Co-Founder of Oyler Wu, Known for Innovation, to Speak at ArchEx

AIA Virginia is pleased to announce that Dwayne Oyler will give a keynote address during the General Session at ArchEx on Nov. 7, 2019. Oyler is a partner at the LA-based architecture firm Oyler Wu Collaborative, which he co-founded with Jenny Wu. The firm is widely recognized for its experimentation in design, material research, and fabrication. He’ll share the firm’s approach to fostering a collaborative and innovative culture – including the development of LACE, Wu’s 3D printed jewelry line.  

About the Work
The firm was recognized with the prestigious Miller Prize in 2017 to create The Exchange, an installation at Eero Saarinen’s Irwin Conference Center. The installation “fabricates a new space within the site by completing the geometries implied by three canopies, legacies of the Irwin Conference Center’s history as a drive-up bank.”

They’re also known for their design of 3D System’s Culinary Lab, an experimental food lab in LA. The firm stripped the interior of a 1928 Neoclassical bank down to its elements, and created a two-story glass food-printing room outfitted with 3D food printers and a demonstration kitchen. The mezzanine is wrapped in an intricately woven guardrail of white linear steel elements and CNC milled wood panels.

In 2013, the firm designed The Cube for the Beijing Biennale. The 52-foot tall installation, constructed of painted steel and rope, is a 3-dimensional solid object bounded by six square faces. According to the firm, “the aspiration of the installation is to achieve the transcendence of the first dimension – the line – by simulating warping two-dimensional planes, which penetrate and populate the object framework, to create the perception of inhabitable three-dimensional space.”

Their experimentation with lines and geometry is carried through in their design for Monarch a 16-story residential high rise in Taipei, Taiwan. The project employs a “strategy of ‘pixilated lines’ by applying a set of exterior paneling in varying materials and differing geometries to run along the façade of the building.”

About Dwayne Oyler
Oyler received his Bachelor of Architecture from Kansas State University and Master of Architecture from Harvard University Graduate School of Design. Prior to establishing Oyler Wu Collaborative, he worked for Toshiko Mori Architects and collaborated with Lebbeus Woods on numerous projects including Nine Boxes, Terrain, and Siteline Vienna. He has taught architecture studios at Syracuse University, The Research Institute for Experimental Architecture, and The Cooper Union. He teaches architecture design studios at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI_Arc) and is also a visiting professor at Columbia GSAPP in New York.

About Oyler Wu Collaborative
Oyler Wu Collaborative, based in Los Angeles, was founded in 2004. The firm has been recognized with numerous design awards, including the 2013 Emerging Talent Award from AIA California Council, 2012 Presidential Honor Award for Emerging Practice from AIA LA, and 2011 Emerging Voices Award from the Architectural League in New York. They also won the 2013 Design Vanguard Award from Architectural Record. The firm has published two books, including Pendulum Plane (2009) and Trilogy: SCI Arc Pavilions (2014).

About Architecture Exchange East
ArchEx is AIA Virginia’s annual conference and expo. This year, it takes place at the Greater Richmond Convention Center from Nov. 6–8, 2019. We’ll be bringing together the brightest minds and most engaging speakers to explore the theme of culture.