Perez to Present 'Rethinking Wright' Lecture at Crystal Bridges on May 21

This site model created by Fay Jones School students shows the Bachman Wilson House, by Frank Lloyd Wright, as it will be situated on site at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Students have also designed and will build a viewing pavilion near the house.
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This site model created by Fay Jones School students shows the Bachman Wilson House, by Frank Lloyd Wright, as it will be situated on site at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art. Students have also designed and will build a viewing pavilion near the house.

BENTONVILLE, Ark. – Santiago Perez, assistant professor of architecture and 21st Century Chair in the Fay Jones School of Architecture, will present a lecture titled “Rethinking Wright: Adapting the Usonian Principle in 21st Century Architecture” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 21, at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

Perez will present the opening night lecture for the museum’s architecture speaker series, which will explore the work of Frank Lloyd Wright, Crystal Bridges architect Moshe Safdie, and the connections between their work.

In his talk, Perez will discuss the styles of Wright and Safdie in conjunction with emerging new designs for the 21st century. He will examine the relationship between the 20th century notion of design, as related to craft, in comparison with current applications of technology leading to concepts and practices informing mass-customized, adaptive and environmentally responsive strategies in architecture.

He will explore the implications of both hand-crafted and parametric design in relationship to the “economy of materials” concept implied by the term “Usonian,” as well as contemporary digital architecture practices challenging notions of simplicity and economy, with the resurgence of interest in ornament, pattern and “intricacy.” This will be a critical look at both the potential and limits of digital design, with BIM (building information modeling), parametric design and other methods compared to the directness of detailing and design implied by Wright’s use of the term “Usonian.”

The lecture will serve as a public introduction to the Pavilion Design Process, which students of the Fay Jones School are currently investigating as they design and build a pavilion from which to view and interpret Wright’s Bachman Wilson House on the museum’s grounds. The talk also will demonstrate the pavilion’s relationship to Wright’s thinking and construction ideas, in relation to current technologies.

Perez also will discuss the design process that Safdie used for Crystal Bridges and how that relates to digital practices.

Admission is free for museum members and $10 for non-members. Registration for this lecture is available online or at the museum's Guest Services.

For more information, contact Crystal Bridges at 479-418-5700 or visit crystalbridges.org/.

Contacts

Santiago Perez, assistant professor, architecture
Fay Jones School of Architecture
479-575-5019, sperez@uark.edu

Michelle Parks, director of communications
Fay Jones School of Architecture
479-575-4704, mparks17@uark.edu

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