Now is the time: 2016 National Architecture Conference creative team announced

The future is now, according to the team behind the Australian Institute of Architects’ 2016 National Architecture Conference, hosted in Adelaide 28-30 April 2016.

Cameron Bruhn, Ben Hewett and Sam Spurr were announced as the 2016 Creative Directors by the Institute’s National President David Karotkin at the 2015 Conference, RISK.

In presenting their theme, How soon is now, the creative team said ‘We want to explore the agency of architecture to make real changes in the world, empowering architects to participate in the massive transformations that are occurring to cities, to global as well as local societies and to the sustainability of our planet.’

‘The ceaseless appetite for the new means that architecture is constantly projecting, speculating and theorising. Instead of always looking into the future or back into the past, projects are already demonstrating the new ways in which architecture operates in the world. The future is right now and we want to present what it looks like.

‘The challenge for architecture is to not retreat into itself and be ostracised from the extraordinary moment in history in which it finds itself. But rather to recognise its place in contemporary practice, and to stake a claim for its agency within that system.’

How soon is now will continue the shift of conversation from a self-reflective and internal one to an open, collaborative and discursive one. The focus will be on exemplary buildings and the experiences and knowledge of the people that fund, conceive, create and inhabit them.

About the team

Cameron Bruhn is the editorial director of Architecture Media, Australia’s leading publisher for the architecture and design community. Prior to his appointment as editorial director, Cameron was the editor of Architecture Media publications Artichoke and Landscape Architecture Australia. He holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Queensland and is undertaking a practice-based PhD at RMIT University. In 2010 and 2013 he curated Australia’s contribution to the international architecture showcase at the London Festival of Architecture. He has twice been a member of multidisciplinary teams shortlisted for the creative directorship of the Australian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale of Architecture and in 2010 was a member of the jury for the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Architecture Awards. Cameron is an active contributor to design culture through writing, editing and publishing and his participation in awards juries, sessional teaching and guest speaking.

Ben Hewett is Director of Strategic Services, NSW Government Architect’s Office and Adjunct Professor Architecture, University of Technology, Sydney (UTS). From 2010-2014, he was South Australian Government Architect and Executive Director of the Office for Design and Architecture SA. Leading SA’s nationally recognised Design Review Program, Ben was exposed to the large breadth and variety of design professionals, planners, developers, clients and stakeholders involved in delivery of our built environment. Ben was previously Executive Director of the Integrated Design Commission, Director of 5000+ (an Integrated Design Strategy for inner Adelaide) and has broad experience across academia and government as well as commercial and small practice.

Sam Spurr is an architectural theorist and designer working across academia, art, journalism and curatorship. She is currently a senior lecturer at University of NSW (UNSW) Art and Design and a research fellow at the University of Adelaide. Sam received her doctorate from UNSW then taught architecture and design at UTS. Sam has curated numerous international and local exhibitions, public interviews and design projects that seek to expand the discourse on architecture, art and urbanism. She has exhibited at the Moscow Biennale 2013, Sydney Biennale 2012, Storefront Gallery NYC (2012), the Prague Quadrennial 2011 and The Gwangju Design Biennale 2011, as well co-curating the first SEAM Symposium (2009) on architecture, film and dance. She writes for academic journals as well as architecture and design magazines, including Architecture Australia, Domus, FRAME, MARK and Monument.

The National Architecture Conference – How soon is now will be held in Adelaide from 28 to 30 April 2016.