What stands the tests of time? Is it ancient epics, like the Iliad? Is celebrated works of art, like Starry Night? If you’re Bernard Tschumi, lauded as one of the most influential architects of our time, it’s architecture.
“He believes that architecture is the most innovative, the most important innovation of our time,” says Nate Eudaly, executive director of The Dallas Architecture Forum. “In other words, how we express art and music and all these things, he thinks they kind of find a synthesis in architecture.”
Tschumi, who literally wrote the book on architecture (his books are used as “go-to textbooks in many architecture schools across the country,” Eudaly says), will speak about his philosophy on architecture Thursday in a virtual lecture with the Dallas Architecture Forum.
The Swiss-born architect, who is a distinguished professor and former dean of Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, will also discuss his vast body of work, which includes the Acropolis Museum in Athens, the cage-free Paris Zoological Park, and the Binhai Science Museum in Tianjin, China.
“We wanted to have Mr. Tschumi speak for us for quite a few years,” Eudaly says. “I’m thankful that it’s finally worked out.”
Founded 25 years ago, the Dallas Architecture Forum aims to educate the community on how all kinds of architecture and design—including landscape architecture and interior design—and how it is woven into our daily lives.
“Design can improve lives,” Eudaly says. “You know, everything you do each day, whether it’s getting the toothpaste or getting your car, I mean all that was designed by somebody.”
The Forum’s lecture series has brought in nearly 300 architects and industry leaders from around the world as guest speakers over the years. This season’s speakers have included Austin-based Scott Specht, who has worked in Dallas, and Barbara Bestor, who was included in Architectural Digest’s 2020 Top 100 architects.
The season continues later this spring with four more speakers, including Michal Hsu and Toshiko Mori, Harvard University Graduate School of Design’s first tenured female professor.
There is also a panel series that features local industry leaders, but it’s important to bring in international leaders from all over too, Eudaly says. Just like museums bring in “artists from around the world because they want Dallasites to kind of expand their artistic horizon,” he says, “we do the same thing.”
Although Thursday’s event is virtual because of the recent spike in COVID-19 cases, Eudaly hopes the spring events will be in-person. All lectures are free for Forum members. Learn more about memberships here.