Research Lab on Urban Landscapes and Architecture

Looking for Yarn Donation

For this years Nuit Blanche in Toronto we are looking for donations of old knitted sweaters, hats, anything made from yarn that could be recycled. We are collaborating on a project and part of the exhibition requires us to crochet sculptural pieces. Please contact us if you have any yarn.


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Robert Venturi: “Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture” | Interpreted

Robert Venturi in Complexity and Contradiction in Architecture addresses architecture as the only place where redundant and simple construction, in thinking and in material reality, takes shape. All other art forms indulge and promote complexity in their art form especially in the multiplicity that occurs in poetry, fine art and even mathematics, which build on the multitude of possibilities to creating the art. Architecture is different because it does not adapt to the opportunity of variety. Venturi suggests that architecture is rationalized through rejecting and excluding the complexities that emerge in architecture because the building is essentially comprised of a multitude paradoxes, from dealing with outside and inside, movement and immobility and so on.

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Toronto Botanical Garden

Dembroski Centre and the TGB

If we disregard the fact that the Toronto Botanical Gardens lies in between naturally tailored habitat and a cemented parking lot there is high potential for a system that is giving back rather than trampling on natural habitat. The environment is thriving due to the systemic interrelationship between the cistern that collects rainwater that connects back into the irrigation and nourishes the organisms at the surface. This cyclical pattern is an example of eco-effectiveness, acting like the cherry tree in Cradle to Cradle, by enriching the resources that are essential for its survival through a production and waste pattern. TBG is eco-effective in this way because the water collection and distribution method is creating a dynamic living environment for plants, insects and animals.
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Sharp Centre for Design: Building Technology and Structure

Filed under: Idea Bank, , , ,

Venture 4 Change

An upcoming conference is approaching quickly. Venture 4 Change is a social innovation gathering for people with strong ideas to share and receive. Featuring conversations with Tony Pigott, CEO of JWT Canada and co-founder of the BRANDAID Project and the co-founder of Ben and Jerry’s Jerry Greenfield talking about the business model for social change.

Date: March 29 2010

Location: Whistle Bear Golf Club just minutes off of Hwy 401 between Kitchener and Cambridge


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Regional Biomimicry Action Network

This article features the growing biomimicry community in Toronto. It hints at the importance of collaboration with multiple fields and the importance of discussion to achieve successful implementation.

via Regional biomimicry action network formed in Toronto — Jan. 5, 2010.

Bio Inspired Social Networking

Posted By Ozana Gherman

Filed under: Idea Bank,



The Rem Koolhaas house in France. A documentary film(houselife) by Louise Lemoine and Ila Beka about the daily antics of the housekeeper Guadalupe Acedo through The House in Bordeaux(1998). Just as interesting is the special features that hosts an interview with Koolhaas watching the movie. He speaks of platonics of architecture and of cleaning and also of architecture as hypothesis. This looks at an idea of architects as scientists. Architectural projects as propostitions and hypothesis that need an analysis with the final project as the solution. What is missing is the resolution. Too often of times do architectural projects get built and are left to their own devices to survive in the world.

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HYDROCity asks: What forms of urbanism and landscape systems will emerge, and what design potentials exist, in this expanding liquid infrastructure?

The show will feature examples from around the world of attempts at solving the question by looking at the relationship between cities and water.


DATE | 5 November – 5 January

LOCATION | Toronto Free Gallery, 1277 Bloor Street West, Toronto

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Tipping Points and Tangents with REBAR

REBAR will be on the panel as one of the contributing members to the AFH and archiTEXT discussion on urban issues in Toronto. Come and be a part of the discussion on Monday November 23 2009 at 6 30PM. The discussion will be interactive. We will be raising issues as will the public audience.

Lecturer Bios

1. Glen Murray:
Former Mayor of Winnipeg & Chair of National Round Table on the Environment & Economy

Born in Montreal, Murray served as city councilor in Winnipeg from 1990 to 1998. He was elected mayor of Winnipeg on October 28, 1998 and successfully reduced the property taxes by 8.4% over his six years in office. He led an administration that cut the cumulative city debt in half and oversaw the restoration of the city’s financial health and three increases in its credit rating. He led a renewal of downtown facilitating partnerships and creating a fund and tax incentives that led to the development of a new downtown college, entertainment and sports centre, inhabited bridge, Hydro corporation and credit union head office towers, waterfront residential district, a downtown library and the gifting of the land and financial assistance for a new national museum in Winnipeg. Murray, who lives in Toronto now, was appointed by Prime Minister Paul Martin as chair of a National Round Table on the Environment and Economy in March 2005.

2. Sarah Prevette:
RedWire, Sprouter: CEO & Founder

Enabling collaboration and networking between entrepreneurs globally, Sarah is responsible for setting the overall direction and strategy for the company. She leads the design of Sprouter’s service and oversees the development of its core technology and infrastructure. She directs the team with a special focus on delivering exceptional user experiences, continuous innovation, and highly relevant, accountable, and nontraditional marketing.

3. Paul Dowsett:
Sustainable: CEO & Founder

With over than two decades of local & international, institutional, commercial & residential environmentally-sensitive architectural practice, including his own home, Paul Dowsett specializes in the integration of sustainable construction features with small scale projects. Providing sensible, sensitive & sustainable solutions to create and renovate residential home or work spaces, Sustainable -run by Paul Dowsett ¬- has encountered various clients puzzled by green-information overload. Subsequently the organization assists home and business owners in understating of incorporating practical green value to their property.

4. Research Lab on Urban Landscapes and Architecture (REBAR)

A collective of Ontario College of Art and Design interested students in understanding in Toronto’s urban landscapes through critical art and design interventions, REBAR intensifies and extends the OCAD classroom into critical engagement with the shifting conditions of the contemporary city. Through group discussion and research, exhibitions and installations, participating in design charettes and other special events, REBAR is hoping to encourage and participate in a critical shift in the city of Toronto.

Filed under: Lecture, , , , ,

Falstaff Charette

falstaff ave northyork

img. Falstaff Ave. North York

The Institute Without Boundaries is hosting a charette on the topic of affordable housing that is also sustainable which will begin Thursday November 5 2009.


Filed under: Events, , , ,


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