Designing Futures
Rethinking the Architect’s Practice

Tuesday, November 27th 2018,
6pm to 9:30pm
Consulate General of Finland in New York
605 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10158

Liam Young, Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today
Catherine Pease, vPPR
Eero Lundén, Lundén Architecture Company

Introduction & moderator:
Eva Geitel,
Vice Chairman, Finnish Association of Architects (SAFA)

Digitalization and emerging technologies are rapidly changing the environment and the cities we live in. Augmented and virtual reality have added new layers to existing spaces while different apps have created various platforms to socialize in. How we understand and experience space is in constant flux.

Is architecture as a profession adequately responding to these global developments? How diverse will the profession be–or should it be– in the future? Is there a danger that the profession will not adapt to the changes as holistically as it should? Are architects possibly slowly marginalizing themselves if the majority of the profession is solely focused on designing and building cities as they used to be? Or could it be argued that a multidisciplinary approach within the profession of architecture makes the discipline more relevant than ever.

Designing Futures explores these themes with professionals acting in different fields of architecture; as researchers, journalists, curators and practicing architects.


Liam Young, Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today

“New City: Keeping up Appearances”. Image: Liam Young

“I think architect’s skills are completely wasted on making buildings. But I don’t see it as weakening the profession, I see it as strengthening. It means that the profession can find traction in other fields: the architect as strategist, as politician, as planner; the architect as curator or editor or writer, as activist or storyteller. Finding ways to operate in other disciplines just gives us much more agency. ”  (LiamYoung on UnCube Magazine, Sept 2015)

Liam Young is an Australian born architect who operates in the spaces between design, fiction and futures. As the founder of Tomorrow’s Thoughts Today – a London-based think tank exploring consequences of fantastic, speculative and imaginary urbanisms, Young has consulted and conducted workshops on speculation, emerging technologies and future forecasting for various companies, the film industry and several arts and science institutions.

He currently runs an M.SA. program in Fiction and Entertainment at SCI-Arc in LA and is a lecturer at Strelka in Moscow. He has also taught at the Architectural Association in London and at Princeton University. To build his design fiction on reality Young has co-founded the award winning nomadic workshop ‘Unknown Fields Division’. Unknown Fields travels on expeditions to the ends of the earth to investigate unreal and forgotten landscapes, alien terrains and industrial ecologies to document emerging trends and uncover the weak signals of possible futures. Through these expeditions Unknown Fields have developed projects from the Ecuadorian Amazon and the Galapagos Islands to far north Alaska, the mining landscapes of the Australian outback, the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone and Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Catherine Pease
, vPPR

Ott’s Yard, Tufnell Park, London. Image: Helene Binet

Catherine Pease is a London based architect and a founding director of vPPR Architects. Before founding her own studio she worked several years in New York at SOM. She is currently Adjunct Assistant Professor at Columbia GSAPP. vPPR is an award winning office known for intelligent design in complex locations. The firm’s work ranges from urban master plans to private houses, from cultural projects to commercial ones. The studio operates under the belief in the continual crossover between art and architecture, seeking creative solutions that strengthen communities, no matter how large or small. Pease lectures internationally with a particular emphasis on new building typologies as a means to create innovative social opportunities for existing and future communities.

Eero Lundén
, Lundén Architecture Company

Another Generosity, Venice Architecture Biennale 2018.
Image: AndreaFerroPhotography

Eero Lundén is a Finnish architect and founder of Lundén Architecture Company in 2008. The Helsinki-based office focuses on the development and innovation of the built environment, architecture and urbanism. The office has acquired success in several architecture competitions. Lundén is currently teaching at Urban Renewal Studio at Aalto University. He was chosen to design the Nordic contribution to the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale.

Introduction and moderation

Eva Geitel, Vice Chairman, Finnish Association of Architects (SAFA)

West Metro extension Soukka station, ALA Architects

Eva Geitel is a Finnish architect dividing her time between being project architect at ALA Architects in Helsinki, Finland and Vice President of Finnish Association of Architects (SAFA). Her previous positions includes Lahdelma Mahlamäki Architects in Helsinki and SOM New York. Eva is currently FCINY’s architect-in-residence in October through December 2018. During her residency she concentrates on her research project on architect’s practice. The project Designing Futures explores the various positions architects could act on in the future. The aim of the project is to raise questions on where the profession should see itself in the context of influencing society and shaping different futures for next generations. Read more about her residency and research here


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Partners & Sponsors

Designing Futures is co-hosted by Eva Geitel and the Finnish Cultural Institute in New York

Supported by

The Consulate General of Finland in New York
The Association of Finnish Architects’ Offices
Alfred Kordelin Foundation
Arts Promotion Finland
Finnish Association of Architects (SAFA)