Visiting Lecture | Sandra Kaji-O'Grady: LabOratory: How Buildings Speak For and About Scientific Research

Tuesday, November 12, 2019, 6:30 - 8:30pm

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Image Credit: S. Kaji-O’Grady and C. L. Smith research team, 2018.

Image Credit: S. Kaji-O’Grady and C. L. Smith research team, 2018.

Private and public institutions for biosciences research have invested much in the construction of new buildings over the past two decades. They do so in the belief that architecture will accelerate research, placate the community, enrich organizational reputation, assist recruitment of star scientists and attract funding. While these ambitions are shared, the architecture that has resulted is extraordinarily diverse, resisting any conformation to a typological ideal. Illustrated by key examples and insights from philosophers and historians of science, this lecture will examine the specific ways in which laboratory architectures have met, indeed, exceeded the specific configurations and dispositions of its scientist clients.

Sandra Kaji-O’Grady is Professor of Architecture at the University of Queensland, Australia where she teaches design. She was the Dean and Head of School at UQ between 2013 and 2018, and previously held similar roles at the University of Sydney and the University of Technology, Sydney. Her research on the expression of science in laboratory architecture culminated in two recent books: Laboratory Lifestyles: The Construction of Scientific Fictions, edited by Kaji-OGrady, Chris L. Smith and Russell Hughes (MIT Press, 2018) and LabOratory: Speaking of Science and its Architecture, Kaji-O’Grady and Chris L. Smith  (MIT Press, 2019). Her next book examines buildings that serve the pet industry and the design of urban spaces for companion animals.

This event is open to current Cooper Union students, faculty, and staff. Room 215F. 

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