Convention and the Unconventional

The week before I was to deliver my seminar speech on "What It Takes to Create a 21st Century Design Culture" for the 33rd United Architects of the Philippines National Convention, I found myself flying from Phoenix to Dallas to Phoenix to New York City to Philadelphia to New York City to Chicago to Phoenix to Seattle to Phoenix to Manila. Whew!

Now what did I get from all those traveling? A really bad cold and worst case of allergies. The high-altitude cabin pressure from the plane made my congested sinuses worse, and gave me some good beating of airplane-ear. When I landed in Manila, I was literally on medication. True to the work ethic that was instilled in me while living at Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin---"adding tired to tired", I still proceeded with my travel despite the advice of my doctor to forego the event.

What It Takes To Create A 21st Century Design Culture

I emphasized 3 main points:


Revolution - a design revolution


Summing it all up to answer: "It's what you a.r.e."

I metaphorically described the Philippines like the biblical character of David,(showing a sculpture image of David by Bernini) during my presentation

conquering the giant Goliath (showing a painting of David and Goliath by Caravaggio).

Message of the speech: You can conquer the Goliaths in your life/profession just like David if your God is as big as David's God.

This weekend, I head off to San Antonio Texas for the National Convention of the American Institute of Architects. We are now celebrating our 150 years of existence, with approximately 80,000 members strong.

This convention is of the unconventional where Green Is In. One of the highlights of the speaker sessions is the theme presentation of former Vice President, the honorable Al Gore. More on this topic later.

The Honorable Al Gore's speech at the American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Convention in San Antonio, Texas
May 5, 2007

As a licensed/registered architect in the USA and member of the AIA, I attended our national convention in warm and humid Texas this weekend (reminded me of my recent visit to Manila the week earlier). One of the highlights of this event was environment-rockstar Al Gore. His speech was powerful and his presence captivating. He left this wonderful message to the AIA:

"You are in this profession (architecture) at the time (of climate change and global warming) when civilization is asking you to play a key role."

He added:

Architects are in a position to lead the way in solving climate change issues. This is a collective challenge where architects need to share information with other architects. Are we willing and capable of rising to this challenge in spite of inconsistent and discouraging government policies? Don't get tired. You're needed now than ever before. Architects are going to design key roles---being problem solvers of the built environment. You are affecting change through advocacy. Have the moral courage to do what they say is impossible. These are moral imperatives disguised or described as problems.


obbiejuan said...

I like Frank Ghery, too! His architechture reminds me of Gustav Mahler's music. I saw a concert at the new LA Philharmonic hall that he designed on PBS, it's nice. I think that's all he needed to hear from people like us who admire him and his work. He was with Charlie Rose one time and he never ceased to amaze me wih his candor and simplicity. Have you ever met him in person? Wright is ok, but I like Ghery's down to earth approach better.

Pinoy force be with you...

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