International Conference on Architectural Criticism: on the Duty and Power of Architectural Criticism / Online October 2021

“Should architectural criticism be enlightening? Should it help in the creation of a better built environment? Is there a factual basis to it? Does it have a duty to present evidence in the evaluation of a building? Or should it take on what architects say about their designs?
In the context of a flat internet, should architectural criticism be able to define best practices? Does it wield the power over who is in and who is out?
Architectural criticism, like all human endeavors, is at a crucial juncture. While serious architecture struggles for recognition, much so- called architectural criticism is merely a poorly paid, decorative legitimation for hyperbolic practice. Incisive architectural criticism is rare, while the definition of criticism itself has become opaque.

This conference seeks papers that define the purposes and methods of architectural criticism. What should the ethical basis be of architectural criticism? Can it be objective in the context of paid content? Should it outline ideal practices? Or what should it do?”

Abstracts (max. 250 words) should address either the duty or the power of architectural criticism, in both cases offering the outline of one analysis of an existing building. Submit to:

Subject to acceptance, abstracts will be completed by their authors for presentation with four keynote lectures during the online conference on 9–10 and 16–17 October 2021, hosted by the School of Architecture, The University of Texas at Austin. The entire conference will be recorded and placed on Youtube. The conference language will be English.

Organization: Wilfried Wang, The University of Texas at Austin

Keynote Lecturers
Kenneth Frampton, New York City, USA
Philippa Tumubweinee, Cape Town, South Africa
Ruth Verde Zein, São Paulo, Brazil
Zheng Shiling, Shanghai, China

More information at the CICA event webpage, the University of Texas at Austin webpage and on vitruvius webpage.