Traveling with the Norden Fund

John Hill
7. July 2017
Left: Framed view of the Acropolis ruins from a vista location on Dimitris Pikionis’ pathway in Athens (Photo: Daniel Pearson); Right: The Three Towers in Grenoble, France, by Roger Anger (Photo: Roberto Conte)

The Architectural League of New York has announced the two recipients of the Deborah J. Norden Fund travel grants: Kevin Malawski and Indian-Architects curator Priyanka Shah.

According to the Architectural League, "The Deborah J. Norden Fund awards up to $5,000 annually in travel grants to students and recent graduates in the fields of architecture, architectural history, and urban studies." This year's recipients are Kevin Malawski for "Pikionis’ Pathway: Paving the Acropolis" and Priyanka Shah for "Deep Skins: Roger Anger’s Façade Operations."

Of course, we are more than excited that Shah has been selected to visit the French cities of Paris and Grenoble "to document the geometric articulations and arrangements that characterize the façades of Roger Anger’s high-rise residential buildings," per the Architectural League's announcement. Most searches for information on Anger (1923-2008) focus on the French architect's work in the universal town of Auroraville, India, where he served as chief architect for 25 years. But he designed a number of striking buildings in France in the the 1950s and 60s in which his "façade designs present a 'direct antecedent to contemporary computational design' because of the links between spatial planning and façade patterning." To date architect Anupama Kundoo's Roger Anger: Research on Beauty 1958-2008 is the best resource on Anger's work, but Shah plans to "consult various archives in Paris and Anger’s completed buildings in Paris and Grenoble to create a comprehensive digitized monograph of his most complex residential projects and façade designs." We look forward to the results of her travels.

Kevin Malawski, on the other hand, will focus on one specific project: Dimitris Pikionis’ 5-kilometer-long pathway to the Acropolis. Per the Architectural League, "Malawski will examine how Pikionis designed his mosaic-paved walkways to address functional concerns common to the Mediterranean climate by including guttering and trenches to divert water from seasonal downpours, while also situating the walkways within olive tree groves to frame vistas for the visitor." He will do this through "sketches, photographs, and diagrams to explore this case study of Pikionis’ architecture."

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