School of Architecture faculty members in the College of Architecture, Planning and Landscape Architecture at the University of Arizona have been honored once again with multiple awards by the Arizona chapter of the American Institute of Architecture. Five faculty members were celebrated by more than 400 architects and colleagues during the AIA Arizona Awards Gala held November 12, 2022, at the Phoenix Art Museum.
The AIA Arizona 2022 Design Awards recognize excellence in architectural projects and practices in Arizona in the categories of Design, Leadership, Practice, Performance and Education. Their intent is to honor exceptional work (both built and unbuilt) and established practices of excellence as well as to nurture new values and activities that contribute to design and design appreciation, according to AIA Arizona leadership.
Laura Carr, senior lecturer in architecture, won the Community Design Award for the Sewa U’usim Community Partnership’s Mochik Ranch Development, an interdisciplinary, graduate and undergraduate architecture and landscape architecture studio coordinated with Professor of Landscape Architecture and Urban Planning Bo Yang and engaging an interdisciplinary team of CAPLA architecture and landscape architecture students with a panel of community, cultural and professional mentors to create a master plan and facility design for the ranch. In addition to the students, participants also included UArizona's Claudia Nelsen and Kelly Eitzien Smith from Native Peoples Technical Assistance Office, the Pascua Yaqui Heath Department and the Sewa Uuism Community Partnership “Pedagogically, the interdependence of culture, tradition, site and facility design provides a unique opportunity to learn from traditional wisdom how we might chart a sustainable future for all people,” says Carr. “In approaching the master plan and facility design, we asked ourselves: Are we seeking balance and harmony or defaulting to dualism? Dualism is our western default—we see things in opposition as a problem to be solved through separation or elimination. Balance and harmony teach us to find opportunity in opposition.”
Eric Weber, associate professor of architecture, and Trevor Watson, adjunct lecturer in architecture, won the Design Pedagogy Award for ARC 241 Techne I and ARC 242 Techne II. The courses provide second-year students with the skills needed to support their studio education. “Techne is intended to integrate digital 3D modeling, shop training, photography and digital image management with other skills,” says Weber. “Our goal is to focus skills training on improving students’ ability to use material exploration as an iterative tool that can inform learning digital tools—and to help students learn to move between digital production and physical fabrication.”
Of the seven citations in the Distinguished Architecture category, two were given to CAPLA faculty:
Assistant Professor of Practice in Architecture Jesús Edmundo Robles Jr of DUST Architects, along with partner Cade Hayes, won a Distinguished Architecture Citation for Marfa Suite, which was also an Architecture Record AR 2021 House Awards finalist. Marfa Suite, which was completed in the winter of 2020 in Marfa, Texas and has been featured in The New York Times and Dwell, was born from “a desire to build an addition that preserved and complemented an existing adobe home’s character and viewsheds while providing a private collection of rooms for a couple to seek refuge when family and friends visit,” says Robles. “The home offers a lived experience that developed into spaces of calm respite and a place to engage with the landscape, work remotely, create art and enjoy time, space and light where the expansive West Texas sky meets the promise of the horizon.”
Professor of Practice Michael Kothke of HK Associates, along with partner Kathy Hancox, won a Distinguished Architecture Citation for Ventana House, which has been featured in Wallpaper* and ArchDaily and received the 2020 AIA Southern Arizona Distinguished Building Award. Ventana House is a two-story, 3,500-square-foot “window in the desert” built into a rocky slope near the foothills of the Santa Catalina Mountains north of Tucson. “I think the most successful aspect of the project is the immersive connection to the outdoors as one moves through the home,” says Kothke. “Turning each corner brings a new engagement with the desert setting.”
Congratulations to CAPLA’s AIA Arizona 2022 Design Award winners!