US PAVILION 2016 PROMISED L-A-N-D AIR

Promised L-a-n-d Air, the A(n) Office proposal for Mexicantown/Southwest Detroit, engages the consequences of North American infrastructure for urban housing, industrial plants, international institutions, and air quality. The program for the almost 10-acre site is conceived as layers of remediation–remediating the displacement of nearby residents, remediating the proliferation of trucks in residential neighborhoods, and remediating the air pollution emitted by industry and diesel engines.

Exhibited in the U.S. Pavilion for the 2016 Venice Architecture Biennale.

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UNDISCIPLINED CMU: A DESIGN-BUILD MASONRY STUDIO

UNDISCIPLINED CMU: A DESIGN-BUILD MASONRY STUDIO is the book that document the project of the same name. The book was done during the Summer of 2015 in collaboration with Pier Paolo Pala, Chau Tran and Yuliya Veligurskaya, students who took part on the Spring semester making the project. The book is available for purchase here and to view online here.

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UNDISCIPLINED CMU

UNDISCIPLINED CMU is the second iteration of a second year undergraduate studio project at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in which a construction is developed as part of a masonry studio. Material is investigated as a given condition and turned into an unexpected object after intense exploration. The resultant object is a concrete construction that, as an education device, opened the possibilities of reimagining and reconsidering the banality of the most typical, and less valued material in the construction industry, by literally cutting it; aiming for an expanded consideration of disciplinary knowledge and industry in the academic setting.

Students: Mariza Antonio, Spoorthi Bhatta, Rawad El-Aawar, Monica Girgis, Freddy Martínez, Brian Mourato, Chit Yee Ng, Joel Nuñez, Pier Paolo Pala, Eliott Pérez, Lauren Rose, María Silva, Roman Schorniy, Chau Tran, Yuliya Veligurskaya, Jeffrey Youmans.
Studio Instructor, 2015.

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THE DAY AFTER THE CARNIVAL

The Day After the Carnival: The Hangover of Work (in Late Capitalism) was a graduate studio taught at Penn Design in the University of Pennsylvania, inquiring the intersection of work-production as a mode of carnivalesque action in the form of hangover. Students researched and draw existing program-buildings near Northern Liberties, analyzed their local-global logics, composed programmatic drawings, developed strategies and formulated and architectural assembly combining them all, including a large cultural programming.

Studio Instructor, 2016.

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HOUSE OPERA | OPERA HOUSE

The House Opera project seeks, through architectural innovation, to propose a fertile alternative to the blight binary of neglect versus demolition. The project seeks to explore what might occur when the borders of a house open up to annihilate the borders between art and community, makers and receivers of art, museums and home.
House Opera | Opera House aims to open and produce new possibilities of public engagement for architecture as a discipline and for houses as a built typology, investigating the means by which a formerly vacant house may serve as a node of cultural infrastructure. As historian Reinhold Martin argues, infrastructure is what is reproduced (financial, political or social infrastructures), the House Opera | Opera House is the product and produces communal infrastructures.
The House Opera | Opera House was originated and led by Mitch McEwen when she bought the house and received funding by grants from the Knight Foundation, Graham Foundation, University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, and individual donors from a crowdsourcing campaign with matched funds by Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

Location: 1620 Morrell Street, Southwest Detroit, Michigan, USA
Designers: Marcelo López-Dinardi, Mitch McEwen, A(n) Office, McEwen Studio
Structural Consultant: Sarah Millsaps Towles
Collaborators: Ye Fu, Salam Rida, Rebecca Curtis, Juan Martínez
Video documentation here.
House Opera website here.

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CMU I

A complement to the 2nd year studios at the New Jersey Institute of Technology students work on a masonry build-mock-up, a competition based project in which students create a masonry construction with the help of masons, typical solid CMU blocks were cut in order to create the space of “staged interactions” within the school environment. The inquiry of the concrete masonry unit, the most typical construction element, offered the opportunity to reconsider a usually overlooked material and its capacities. First prize.

Studio Instructor, 2014.

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FLMM NEW VISITORS CENTER

The project, the new Visitors Center and Museum for the Luis Muñoz María Foundation in San Juan, Puerto Rico, situates itself as a mediator and threshold between a large semi-urban forest and a historic site grouping the former home and small buildings of the owners, where the house of the first elected governor of Puerto Rico is located. A bold two-pieces volume resembles and occupied the space of a natural border that existed before, while providing a threshold welcoming flows through the building to the site and the forest.

Project Lead Designer for Toro Ferrer Arquitectos, 2006-2013.

AIA Puerto Rico, Honor Award, 2008 (unbuilt).

X Architecture Biennial Puerto Rico, Honor Award, 2008 (unbuilt).

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HOUSE O

The house was conceived as a large open interior/exterior space in between the front and back gardens of the elongated site. Two less permeable volumes contain the private and support areas. Formal public living areas are covered with a high roof to create a continuous environment with the gardens and outdoors.

Project Lead Designer for Toro Ferrer Arquitectos, Lead Project Manager and Construction Administrator, 2006-2011.

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VALPARAISO OR AN ANAMNESTIC MEMORY

Memory is a vital resource for trying to explain cities. Valparaíso in Chile has been no exception as evidenced by the efforts that made the city a World Heritage Site (UNESCO) after this project began in 2002. Therefore, critical analysis of heritage-related memory could present operational and architectural alternatives in the exercise of articulating historical value. With this premise, the project proposes an alternative for the staging of the city through its “documents of the past,” with a scenery dominated by the transient and imagination as a tool of memory. The city’s geographic amphitheater-like formation strengthens the relationship with the bay or scenario. In this theatrical play of floating objects and dialectical views, memory becomes a strong yet diffuse record of the temporal, becoming the main resource of the project. 

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The strategy of distancing from the city to intervene from outside raises a dynamic attitude of happening to address the ambitious cultural program for the city. The architecture would transcend its object value, framed in the city’s undeniable landscape. In this sense, the project works on several levels, it appropriates the floating dock structure Valparaíso III as the venue for fall/winter cultural events. Here the activities will occur in a series of pavilions, which would be at this time of the year within the floating dock to safeguard them from the winter tides. During the first day of Spring, pavilions will float and leave the dock to locations in the city shore, to accommodate orchestrated events that will complement the festive coastal living. 

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The project’s five pavilions could be associated with various expressions of the city. There are four types that accommodate exhibitions, music performances and film screenings. Cladded in copper they seek to acquire the passage of time. Architecture will perform its capacity to provoke and activate the individual memories of the collectivity through time.

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