• Featured in the August 1950 issue of Popular Mechanics, Tyng sits with her Tyng Toy (1947).

March 5, 2020-March 6, 2020

Anne Tyng: Ordered Randomness

Connecting the technical and conceptual, the work of Anne Tyng stands out within and beyond the field of architecture. Through independent projects, in addition to her work with architects Louis Kahn and Pier Luigi Nervi, Tyng explored geometry as it relates to natural form and construction. She approached design as a process and profession through teaching and writing, addressing the social, psychological, and experiential dynamics of creativity and collaboration; her work has influenced other practitioners as well as models of practice. At the center of this conference is the question, “How do we position the legacy of an architect whose interests and methods remain relevant in contemporary discourse?” Anne Tyng: Ordered Randomness reconsiders established histories by tracing Tyng’s design approach through built and unbuilt works, and further explores continuing resonances of her work as found in current architectural and engineering practices.

This conference is made possible by the Jean Labatut Memorial Lecture Fund. The School of Architecture, Princeton University, is registered with the AIA Continuing Education System (AIA/CES) and is committed to developing quality learning activities in accordance with the AIA/CES criteria.

WDA Student Group

Kaitlin Faherty, Larissa Guimaraes, Jamie Lipson, Domenica Massamby, Elena M’Bouroukounda, Luis Munoz, Sonia Sobrino Ralston, Lisa Ramsburg, and Anna Renken


Creativity + Psychology

As a writer, historian, and teacher, Tyng addressed creativity and collaboration in relation to social and psychological issues. Her publications have addressed the experience of women as collaborators in architecture, connections between geometry and consciousness, and the psychology of urban environments. Tyng’s thoughtfulness on the dynamics of learning and working is visible in her Tyng Toys, a modular system for children. This panel will explore Tyng’s interdisciplinary methods and attention to experience, situating them historically and examining their continuing influence on the discipline.

Geometry + Construction

As a designer and researcher, Tyng explored geometry in relationship to construction technology and natural form across various scales. She received a Bauhaus-influenced training at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, worked closely with Louis Kahn in Philadelphia, and studied with architect and engineer Pier Luigi Nervi in Rome. Her long-term geometric investigations have influenced built and unbuilt projects in a variety of ways, yet her authorship has not always been acknowledged. Addressing archival material and curatorial strategies, this panel will track the intensity and reach of Tyng’s work in geometry and construction.


Sigrid Adriaenssens

Sigrid Adriaenssens
Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Princeton

Dr. Adriaenssens’s research focuses on lightweight surface systems and how they can be optimized and realised to interact with extreme structural or environmental loading. This includes research on flexible and rigid shells and plates, submerged flexible membranes and nets, and metamaterials with applications for a resilient urban environment. The applications range from adaptive building shading devices to large-scale inflatable storm surge barriers and are sometimes inspired by systems that evolved in biology, art or architecture. Dr. Adriaenssens’ research spans analytical approaches to study non-linear mechanics, seeking new numerical form finding, optimization and machine-learning approaches and fluid-interaction models as well as experimental aspects based on prototyping of small and medium scale systems using CAD/CAM and robotic construction.


Sarah Bonnemaison

Sarah Bonnemaison
Professor, School of Architecture, Dalhousie University

Sarah Bonnemaison teaches architecture at Dalhousie University. She has a doctorate in human geography from UBC and degrees in architecture from Pratt Institute and MIT. As an architect, she specialized in lightweight structures and practiced in offices in Germany and in the US before starting her own office Filum ltd. She is currently the leader of the theory stream in the Living Architecture Group with Philip Beesley Architect based in Toronto.

Sarah is also a writer. Her books include Architecture and Nature; Festival Architecture; and Installations by Architects, as well as numerous contributions to edited volumes and journals. Her passion lies in bringing history and theory to life through interactive exhibitions. Her current writing project explores the endurance of organicism in the work of women architects of the 20th century.


Anda + Jenny French

Anda + Jenny French
Principals, French 2D; (Jenny) Assistant Professor in Practice of Architecture, Harvard University Graduate School of Design

French 2D is a Boston-based architecture studio founded by Jenny French (MArch Harvard GSD, BA Dartmouth College) and Anda French (MArch Princeton, BA Barnard College). Their intimate knowledge of Boston, where the sisters were born and raised, allows the close practice to be both deeply engaged and work critically with local issues of housing, public space, history and identity. French 2D works on housing and mixed-use projects with a focus on strange housing types that combine familiar ideas of home with radical organizations and typologies, found in their cohousing and micro-housing projects. The practice also works on civic installations and exhibitions that call upon the domestic to bring people together for familiar rituals in unfamiliar spaces, found in serial dinner-parties, fuzzy bartering environments, and out-scaled dresses.

Jenny and Anda’s interest in hybrid models that exist between practice and academia has been the
catalyst for their practice-based research and advocacy. Jenny is an Assistant Professor in Practice at
the Harvard GSD and Anda serves on the Board of Directors for the Boston Society of Architects,
where the pair organized the recent Now Practice Now series, exploring emerging modes of practice.

French 2D was named as an Architectural Record Magazine Design Vanguard winner in 2019. The firm
has been featured in Domus, Metropolis, The Architect’s Newspaper, and as Architect Magazine’s Next Progressives. French 2D was a 2013 MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program finalist and exhibited at
the US Pavilion of the 13th Venice Architecture Biennale.


Sarah Herda

Sara Herda
Director, Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in Fine Arts

Since 2006, Sarah Herda has been Director of the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. In addition to hosting internationally renowned architects, artists, historians, and critics to present their work, Herda has produced an exhibition program featuring the work of Cecil Balmond, Thomas Demand, Bjarke Ingels, Nancy Holt, Judy Ledgerwood, Stanley Tigerman, Anne Tyng, Denise Scott Brown, and Robert Venturi, among others.

From 1998 until 2006, Herda was Director and Curator at Storefront for Art and Architecture
Before being named Director of Storefront, Herda was Director of the Center for Critical Architecture/Art and Architecture Exhibition Space in San Francisco, and she also worked in architectural publishing at the Monacelli Press.

Herda has taught at the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and she has frequently been an invited critic and speaker at institutions around the world.


Alicia Imperiale, PhD

Alicia Imperiale, PhD
Visiting Associate Professor, Pratt; Visiting Critic, School of Architecture, Yale

Alicia Imperiale is an architect, artist, historian, and theorist. She holds a BArch from Pratt Institute with Highest Honors; an MFA in Combined Media from Hunter College, City University of New York; and an MA and PhD in Architectural History & Theory with an emphasis in Science and Technology Studies from Princeton University. She is a licensed architect in New York.

Her work harnesses various modes of inquiry and expression to investigate the underlying impact of technology on the arts, society, and culture. Her scholarly work examines the interplay between technology and art, architecture, representation, and fabrication from the postwar period to the present.

Her writings include New Flatness: Surface Tension in Digital Architecture (Birkhauser, 2000) and the manuscript Organic Architecture as an Open Work: The aesthetics of experimentation in art, technology & architecture in postwar Italy, which expands upon her dissertation from Princeton University. In 2016-17 she was a Fellow at the Society for the Humanities at Cornell University, where she conducted research for her current book project Machine Consequences: Origins of Output.
Her work has also been supported by a the American Academy in Rome, the Center for the Humanities at Temple University Faculty Fellowship, an MIT Mellon Grant Initiative for contribution to the Global Architecture History Teaching Collaborative, a Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts Research Grant, and a Cornell University Society for the Humanities Fellowship among others.

She has lectured internationally on her work.


Srdjan Jovanović Weiss

Srdjan Jovanović Weiss
Adjunct Associate Professor, The Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, The City College of the City University of New York

Srdjan Jovanović Weiss is a research architect born in 1967 in Yugoslavia and now lives and works in New York. He started as a swimmer with a degree in mathematics. Today he practices non-standard architecture working on special projects in spatial and visual cultures. He founded NAO.NYC for research architecture and exhibitions based in New York and co-founded SMS (School of Missing Studies) for conceptual urban studies. His PhD on Architecture of Balkanization is from Goldsmiths Centre for Research Architecture. He lectures worldwide in museums, universities and public venues and he is frequent visiting professor at Columbia, Cornell, Penn and Harvard. Currently he is Associate Professor at Spitzer School of Architecture at CUNY’s City College. He was also head of research for Herzog & de Meuron Architects in Basel. His art & architecture practice involves working with Ai Weiwei, Robert Wilson, Marjetica Potrc and Jenny Holzer as well as curating and designing exhibitions such as Romancing True Power: D20 with Nina Khruscheva, on dictators proliferation held at The New School as well as Anne Tyng: Inhabiting Geometry held at the ICA Philadelphia and Graham Foundation in Chicago.


Ingrid Schaffner

Ingrid Schaffner
Independent Curator and Writer

Ingrid Schaffner is an American curator, art critic, writer, and educator, specializing in contemporary art.

Schaffner was born in Pittsburgh, grew up in Los Gatos, California, and attended Mount Holyoke College. She then moved to New York City to attend the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent Study Program, where she was a Helena Rubinstein Curatorial Fellow, and New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts, where she received a master’s degree in art history.

Known for the breadth of her art historical knowledge and her exceptional collaborations with artists and architects, Schaffner’s work often coalesces around themes of archiving and collecting, photography, feminism, and alternate modernisms—especially Surrealism. Her many significant monographic and thematic exhibitions have brought attention to under-recognized artists and little-explored themes and practices in the art world. Schaffner directed the exhibition program at the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) at the University of Pennsylvania from 2000 to 2015, and she curated the 57th Edition of the Carnegie International, which opened in 2018 at Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh.


Heather Isbell Schumacher

Heather Isbell Schumacher
Archivist, University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design

Heather Isbell Schumacher is Archivist of the Architectural Archives at the University of Pennsylvania’s Weitzman School of Design. She manages processing and cataloging and provides access to more than 400 design-related collections. She aids students in integrating archival research in their work and contributes to the Archives’ public programs and exhibition initiatives.

Heather received her master’s degree in public history from Temple University in 2010. Previously she served as Curator of Images at the Delaware Historical Society where she managed photograph and audiovisual collections and produced collections-based content for a variety of regional media outlets including WHYY and Delaware First Media. As an activist archivist, Heather believes that archives cannot and should not be neutral spaces, but rather tools for liberation.


Richard Wesley

Richard Wesley
Undergraduate Chair and Adjunct Professor of Architecture, College of Arts & Sciences, University of Pennsylvania

Richard Wesley is an Adjunct Professor of Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania where he serves as Undergraduate Chair in the College of Arts & Sciences. He has taught architectural design and theory at Harvard University, the University of Illinois and the University of Notre Dame. His writings on the history and theory of architecture have been published in Architectural Research Quarterly, Harvard Design Magazine, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Rassegna, Res, and VIA. He currently teaches an undergraduate theory course on geometry in architecture offered in conjunction with an advanced design studio exploring the disciplinary boundaries of geometry with human inhabitation and building construction. His essay, “Drawing to Know: Geometric Descriptions of the City Tower,” is included as a chapter in the forthcoming book, Louis Kahn: The Importance of Drawing, edited by Michael Merrill, published by Lars Müller (Zurich, Fall 2020).


William Whitaker

William Whitaker
Curator, The Architectural Archives, University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design

William Whitaker is curator of the Architectural Archives at the University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design. He is coauthor (with George Marcus) of The Houses of Louis I. Kahn and recipient of the 2014 Literary Award of the Athenaeum of Philadelphia. Trained as an architect at Penn and the University of New Mexico, Whitaker works most closely with the archival collections of Louis I. Kahn, Lawrence Halprin, and the partnership of Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown, in support of teaching, scholarship, preservation, and public engagement.

Whitaker is co-organizer for “Design With Nature Now” – a major program of exhibitions, conference, and public programs that highlight the dynamic and visionary approaches to landscape design and development in the face of climate change and global urbanization.


Cameron Wu

Cameron Wu
Assistant Professor, School of Architecture, Princeton University

Cameron Wu’s independent practice engages with formal analysis and on-going research and design with developable and ruled surface geometries. His inquiry into the organizational principles latent in geometric form has served as a catalyst for re-introducing historical precedent into the contemporary discourse through digital media and fabrication techniques. Drawings and animated analyses of plans of Baroque churches were recently exhibited in a collection entitled “Baroque Machinations” in the 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial. Most recently, he guest edited a special section of Log 43, The Issue of Geometry, which addresses current trends and motivations of geometric form in architecture today, an interest that informs both his design work and pedagogy.

Previously, Wu was Associate Professor of Architecture at Harvard University Graduate School of Design. His work and writing have been featured in Log, AA Files, PLOT, Architectural Record, and Bauwelt, and exhibited at MoMA, Storefront for Art and Architecture, and SFMoMA. In 2012, he was a finalist for the MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program with his submission “Coney Inland.” Wu has practiced in the offices of Preston Scott Cohen Inc., MSME Architects, and James Carpenter Design Associates. Independently, he has built residential projects in both the U.S. and abroad. He has lectured and participated in symposia at various institutions including Columbia, GSD, MIT, UCLA, and the University of Lisbon.

Wu received his B.S.E. in Architecture and Civil Engineering from Princeton University and his Master in Architecture degree from Harvard Graduate School of Design.


Tamar Zinguer

Tamar Zinguer
Associate Professor of Architecture, The Cooper Union

Tamar Zinguer received her professional degree from The Cooper Union in 1989, her M.Sc. in Architecture from the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology – in 1998 and her Ph.D. from Princeton University School of Architecture in 2006. She has practiced architecture in Israel and the United States, and taught at the Technion, Cornell University, Columbia University and Princeton University before The Cooper Union, where she has taught since 2004. She has been the recipient of numerous grants and fellowships – from the Canadian Center for Architecture, The Smithsonian Institution, The Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention, as well as the Center for American Studies at Princeton University. She has received the Whiting fellowship in the Humanities, The Best Young Architect Award in Israel and the America/Israel Keren Sharet Prize in the arts.

Her book Architecture in Play: Intimations of Modernism in Architectural Toys was published by University of Virginia Press in 2015. She has received a Barre-Ferree grant for the publication and has lectured extensively on the topic at conferences and universities.


Program Schedule


March 5th

6:00 PM
Introduction Dean Mónica Ponce de León
6:15 PM
Sarah Herda
Director, Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts

Srdjan Jovanović Weiss PhD
Chief Architect and Founder, NAO.NYC

William Whitaker
Curator, The Architectural Archives, Stuart Weitzman School of Design, University of Pennsylvania


March 6th

10:00 AM
Introduction Dean Mónica Ponce de León
10:15 AM
Heather Isbell Schumacher
Archivist, Stuart Weitzman School of Design, University of Pennsylvania

Introduction by Larissa Guimaraes
11:00 AM
Creativity + Psychology Panel
Tamar Zinguer PhD—Associate Professor of Architecture, The Cooper Union

Anda + Jenny French
Principals, French 2D; (Jenny) Assistant Professor in Practice of Architecture, Harvard University Graduate School of Design

Sarah Bonnemaison PhD
Professor, Faculty of Architecture and Planning, Dalhousie University

Introduction + Moderation by Elena M’Bouroukounda and Luis Muñoz
1:15 PM
Srdjan Jovanović Weiss PhD
Chief Architect and Founder, NAO.NYC

Ingrid Schaffner

Introduction by Kaitlin Faherty
2:15 PM
Geometry + Construction Panel
Sigrid Adriaenssens PhD
Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Princeton University

Richard Wesley
Adjunct Professor of Architecture, University of Pennsylvania

Cameron Wu
Assistant Professor, School of Architecture, Princeton University

Alicia Imperiale PhD
Visiting Associate Professor, Pratt; Critic, School of Architecture, Yale University

Introduction and Moderation by Anna Renken and Jamie Lipson