4 West Burton Place
Chicago, Illinois 60610
This project gathers together multiple descriptions of a fictitious locale as a way to examine how different narrative styles and representational genres may be used to define single spatial and institutional territories in contradictory ways. Toward these ends, Mitnick plans to develop a series of varied historical accounts, written dialogues, conceptual mappings, photographs, diagrams, and architectural drawings that overlay conflicting depictions of such institutions and sites as: bunkers, cemeteries, reservoirs, military bases, factories, zoos, and other civic and recreational venues that feature a variety of simulated natural and themed environments. By using writing styles and book formats inspired by such authors as W. G. Sebald, John Berger, Walter Benjamin, and Fernando Pessoa, rather than conventional architectural writing and scholarship, Rainy Sea Architecture probes the different ways through which our experience of architectural space and institutional identity is inscribed by the forms, techniques, and styles with which it is narrated and represented.
Keith Mitnick is associate professor of architecture at the University of Michigan and is a founder of the design practice Mitnick Roddier Hicks. He has received several design and research awards including the Burnham Prize Fellowship to the American Academy in Rome. He has published essays on his own design work as well as that of Diller+Scofidio and Eduardo Souto Moura. The work of Mitnick Roddier Hicks has been featured as part of the Emerging Practices series in Architectural Record as well as the On the Boards series in Architecture Magazine, and has been exhibited in Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, New York, and Paris. The firm has received numerous awards including the 2004 Young Architects Forum Award from the Architectural League of New York and Architectural Record's 2005 Design Vanguard Award. Mitnick's book Artificial Light was published by Princeton Architectural Press in 2008.
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