3rd Annual ACAW Ceramic Workshop 2018 Recap
by Mic Patterson, PhD, LEED AP BD + C
The ACAWorkshop is a weeklong immersive experience in which entity-based teams explore, design and produce terra cotta assemblies in response to a generalized objective of advancing bioclimatic building solutions. The fabrication process is facilitated by the expert guidance and support of Boston Valley Terra Cotta shop personnel. Boston Valley is the workshop organizer in partnership with the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning and the UB Sustainable Manufacturing and Advanced Robotic Technologies (SMART). This year’s teams included; Morphosis, SHoP Architects, Sasaki/Studio NYL, University at Buffalo, AECOM, and Radical Matter. The teams are actually formed and begin their design explorations well in advance of the actual workshop, the workshop itself being the culmination of this effort. In addition to hands-on fabrication on the shop floor throughout the week, the workshop includes lectures, presentations and networking events, culminating in the presentation and display of the work of each team.
The ACAWorkshop is an outstanding model of industry-academia partnership aimed at the ongoing education of students and practitioners alike. The 2018 event, like its predecessors, provided an extraordinary experience for all participants and makes for a great hands-on experiential success story.
This collaborative effort deserves broad industry and academic recognition as a model for the kind of ongoing educational experience that is far to uncommon in the building industry. As technological evolution accelerates and performance demands increase, access to this type of educational experience is vital to the industry’s ability to step the built environment toward resilience and sustainability goals. The Facade Tectonics Institute is keen to catalyze more such industry-academia collaborations, and commends Boston Valley Terra Cotta and the University of Buffalo for their leadership in this area and providing an exemplary model for such collaborative efforts.
Next year’s workshop is scheduled for August 12-15, 2019, and the collaboration is currently soliciting ideas for, and expressions of interest in, the event. See more here.
Detailed description of the workshop and team profiles, along with extensive photo documentation of the process and products, can be found here:
Mic Patterson is a designer, researcher, educator, futurist, author, photographer and entrepreneur. He has concentrated his professional and academic career on advanced facade technology and sustainable building practices. He pioneered the introduction of structural glass facade technology in the United States in the 1990s, implementing diverse and novel applications including cable trusses, cable nets and grid shells. Patterson was among the founding group of the Advanced Technology Studio of Enclos, where he works as the Vice President of Strategic Development. He is a co-founder of the Facade Tectonics Institute and serves on the steering committee, and co-founder of the Facades+ conference series. He is on the technical research committee for GlassCon Global and a member of the Advisor Group for the Council for Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. He has twice been named among the industry’s most influential by US Glass magazine. Patterson is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Architecture at the University of Southern California with a research focus on sustainable facade renovation practices. He has taught, written extensively, and lectured internationally on diverse aspects of advanced facade technology. He is the author of Structural Glass Facades and Enclosures, published by Wiley.