“I have never been eager to make money by my art, but have gone on the principle that slender means and a good reputation are preferable to wealth and disrepute.” Vitruvius, 1st Century BC
“I refuse to work unless I get paid, so I don’t get a lot of work sometimes.” Gehry, 2003 AD
Architects have endeavored to define and defend the value of their work to their clients, collaborators, and the public for decades if not centuries. While architects are crucial to today’s built environment, why do we feel this isn’t appropriately reflected back? Have architects undervalued themselves? Have they overvalued themselves? Should “value” only be measured in economic terms or should it also be considered functionally, artistically, and socially (and if so, how)?
With these—and many more—questions in mind, the AIANY Future of Practice Committee is convening an honest, critical conversation addressing a simple yet challenging question: What is the value of architects? Our panelists represent a range of viewpoints, so come prepared for an active dialogue and productive debate.
About the Speakers:
Michael Caton is an architect, design strategist, and educator who is deeply passionate about expanding the frontiers of architecture and design strategy. Based in New York City, he is the technical computing director at Juno, a human-centered, technology-powered real estate development startup, and a visiting professor at Pratt Institute’s School of Architecture.
Recognized as an industry pioneer, Marjanne Pearson has the ability to ask the questions that should be on the strategic agenda of every design firm. Building on her experience in design firm management, for the last 35 years she has focused on strategies for organizational success and resiliency. Talentstar clients are a remarkable constellation of ideas-led and best-in-class design firms around the world: signature designers, emergent practices, regional powerhouses, and global giants. She has taught in executive education at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and is a guest lecturer on leadership and practice in the College of Architecture, Planning, and Design at Kansas State University. She also participates in the AIA AAH Colleague to Colleague mentoring program and is a frequent guest for panels and webinars, including Monograph Best Practices and SectionCut.
Erin Pellegrino is a Founder of Out of Architecture and a Visiting Lecturer in Architecture at Cornell University with a focus in Professional Practice. Her studio, Matter, established in 2015, has focused on small-scale interventions and a process-driven design methodology at various scales. Through her work, she seeks to uncover, build upon, and create relationships through product, furniture, and architectural design. She also consults with early technology and design start-up companies for tech accelerators in the New York City area.
Jake Rudin is a Founder of Out of Architecture works as a member of the Adidas Advanced Creation Technologies team, fabricating, designing, digitizing, model making, and exploring all aspects of footwear. As a designer, he has spent time working around the world for firms including Massimiliano Fuksas Architects, ZGF, and the Shenzhen Institute of Building Research (SZiBR). Rudin has taught extensively in architecture and design at universities including Harvard, Cornell, Northeastern, and Portland State University, where he currently teaches Visual Communications in the School of Architecture. He holds a Master in Design Studies (with a concentration in Technology) from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University, and an MBA.
Enoch Sears is a licensed California architect and founder of the Architect Business Institute. He’s famous for helping architects grow their firms, income, and freedom through effective and unique business strategies. He’s the creator and host of the #1 interview podcast for architects, the Business of Architecture, where guests like architects M. Arthur Gensler and Thom Mayne share tips and strategies for success in architecture.
Michael Caton, AIA, Head of Technical Computing, Juno
Marjanne Pearson, Chief Strategy Officer, Talentstar
Erin Pellegrino, Co-Founder, Out of Architecture; Visiting Lecturer in Architecture, Cornell University
Jake Rudin, Co-Founder, Out of Architecture; Senior Manager Digital Technologies, Adidas
Enoch Sears, AIA, Founder, Architecture Business Institute