Professor Trevor Tucker University of Ottawa, Canadian Architecture Writer, Building Designs
Guest Editor at e-architect – architectural articles
Professor Trevor Tucker
Professor Trevor Tucker
Editor and Sessional Professor of English Literature at the University of Ottawa
Architecture Articles by Professor Brian Carter
Architecture Articles by Professor Brian Carter, chronological:
photograph : Ales Jungmann
22 Jan 2013
Architectural Narrative : article by Trevor Tucker. 2 Mar 2010
Being Canadian, it’s tempting to view this week’s buildings through a hockey lens. What is the gold medal architecture around the world? Is there tough competition against traditional rivals? Are there any youthful architects stunning the world with their passion and skill? Who are the goal tenders saving our hides?
As fast as it is, hockey is a game about stability. I always marvel at those fellows who can stick handle down the ice past numerous opponents, take the hits, and still hold onto the puck.
From Mulch to Spaceships
21 Sep 2010
The weather man says it’ll be dipping down to three degrees tonight. We could expect frost. We’re taking the bed sheets out to hang over those tomatoes that have not yet ripened. So far we’ve processed over four large pots of tomatoes and have a few more to go. The last one we boiled down during our first firing of the woodstove, just the other day.
24 Aug 2010
After reading the thoughtful editors these last few weeks, how does one step into such an articulate group? I’m not an architect; I’m a lit prof. Fortunately, there’s some significant overlap.
What are some of the questions we both bring when addressing art? I tend to think (perhaps a little too much) about symbolism. “That is not a tree but the back of a tree;” says Chesterton, “that is not a cloud but the back of a cloud.” Everything is pointing to something else – a reality, behind it.
15 Sep 2009
“Never saw a miracle of science that didn’t turn from a blessing to a curse,” sings Sting in the song “If I Ever Lose My Faith In You”. Wendell Berry, Kentucky novelist, one of America’s greatest essayists, and a member of the American agrarian movement puts it slightly differently: “We can’t solve the problems using the same tools that created those problems.”
I have to admit, my lot is with them. I have not the enthusiastic passion of those who feel that science can solve everything, that we’ve had the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, and that humanity is headed for its next great evolutionary leap. In things architectural, I, admittedly, am drawn to the traditionalists. As William Hazlitt wrote in his essay on reading hard books, “I have more faith in the dead than in the living.”
Sustainability in the Built Environment
18 Aug 2009
Sustainable Building Design
Three months ago, following a meeting with pioneer Bill Teron, I started on my own journey – this one into sustainable architecture. As the founder of Kanata, an early “garden city” just outside of Ottawa, the recommendation was Teron’s, in response to my own hopes of one day becoming an architect. “There are two trains,” he says. “One I think you can catch; the other…not so likely.” Sustainable architecture was the catchable train. With technologies emerging by the day, and few true experts in the field, developing a niche in green building practices seemed possible.
“But I just want to do architecture,” I was thinking as I left Teron’s office. “I’d rather steer clear of that lot of modern hippies and ecologues.”
Inviting Nature back to Town
15 Sep 2009
It’s always fun to see what themes emerge when a diversity of buildings are put together in one weekly list. This week’s run-down of architectural happenings could be said to be about two things: creating views and inviting nature back to town.
Probably the most layered and impacting project of the week is The King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. Heavily inspired by traditional Saudi architecture and ideals, this campus merges LEED-meeting design technologies with a thoughtful sense of history. Unlike the new landmark in Denmark mentioned above, this project seems to be rooted, stretching out across both space and time. There is air, water, greenery, shady public spaces, and an evocative sense of texture.
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