School of Architecture Awards 2017-18 Boghosian Fellowship to Linda Zhang
Syracuse Architecture has selected architectural designer and educator Linda Zhang as the Harry der Boghosian Fellow for 2017-18. She will succeed Assistant Professor Maya Alam, the school’s inaugural Boghosian Fellow. Zhang is currently a Fellow in Residence at the Center for Art and Urbanistics (ZK/U) in Berlin—a trans-disciplinary art/urban research community—where she has been collaborating with Tyler Fox on the design research project “Arch Archives.”
“We’re very fortunate to have Linda Zhang join us as our next Boghosian Fellow,” says Dean Michael Speaks. “She brings with her an extraordinary portfolio and passion for teaching and research that will certainly live up to the high standards of the fellowship.”
The Boghosian Fellowship at Syracuse Architecture—established in early 2015 in memory of Harry der Boghosian ’54 by his sister Paula der Boghosian ’64 (Education)—makes it possible for early career faculty to spend a year developing a body of design research based on an area of interest while teaching at the school. This fall, Zhang will give a public lecture on her research; in the spring, she and her students will prepare a public exhibition.
“I am humbled and honored to be awarded the Boghosian Fellowship,” says Zhang. “As an emerging practitioner early in my career, this is a unique and invaluable opportunity to work with students, faculty and the Syracuse community to pursue my design research interest and propel it into unchartered territory.”
During the 2017-18 academic year, Zhang will teach a studio and an elective course at Syracuse Architecture. The area of focus will be critical memory and the architecture of loss. Addressing the intangible aspects of reality—history, essence, value and meaning—she and her students will focus on explorations in time-based material processes. “Together, we will build an unstable understanding of history,” says Zhang. “We will construct a dynamic future and present moment through the exploration of contested memory, contradictory histories, and a non-linear understanding of temporality.”
Coursework will integrate technical tools of casting and mold-making, and students will develop new forms of critical memory as they explore how to translate conceptual applications to full-scale structures.
Says Zhang: “Working simultaneously at both a theoretical and practical level, my work engages with material processes to indulge my pedagogical obsessions. As such, thinking always translates into making and making into further ideas, both being constantly enriched in the process. The fellowship will provide me with the ideal platform and opportunity for experimentation of precisely both those things.”
Previously, Zhang worked for Studio Olafur Eliasson / Studio Other Spaces (Berlin), Barkow Leibinger (Berlin), Christian Kerez (Zürich), WOJR (Boston) and Approach Architecture Studio (Beijing).
Her work has been published and exhibited internationally in Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and the United States.
She was a Dean’s Merit Scholar at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, where she received an M.Arch I AP with distinction, the AIA Henry Adams Certificate and the James Templeton Kelley Thesis Prize. She received a B.Sc.Arch with First-Class Honors from McGill University School of Architecture, where she was the recipient of the McGill Alumnae 75th Anniversary Scholarship, the Faculty of Engineering Scholarship, the Murdoch Laing Design Competition (third prize), the Philip J. Turner Prize and the Steel Structure Education Foundation Scholarship.
“I hope to continue to set the bar high, as Maya Alam has already done,” Zhang says. “Most of all, I look forward to working with the outstanding student body at Syracuse Architecture.”