News and Trends

Being of Lightness

Hands seem to sink into solid walls. Giant people appear to climb in and out of high windows.  A building looks as if it is turning and clicking into new shapes like a kid’s Transformer toy.

“Projected light media” doesn’t quite capture the etheral magic of this relatively new art form. A gathering at Portland State University explores the topic at the second annual international symposium Illuminated City: A Light with Content Symposium.  The April 9, 2011 event brings in a global group of speakers to explore the technical, politcal and interactive qualities of projected light media. It will include light installations on campus  and works by designers, artists and students featured at Portland art galleries.

For details of the event and check out what projeted light media looks like at Illuminated City.






International Symposium on Projected Light in April

On 9th April 2011, the Department will host its second annual symposium – Illuminated City: A Light with Content Symposium – at which an international group of speakers will explore the experiential, spatial, technical, political and interactive qualities of projected light media. Speakers include Leni Schendinger, Thomas Schiekle, Ali Momeni, Urban Screen, and Spitball Media. The symposium, chaired by Assistant Professor Jeff Schnabel, will include light installations on campus and in Portland galleries featuring the work of designers, artists and students. More information available at






Version:1.0 StartHTML:0000000217 EndHTML:0000015650 StartFragment:0000003890 EndFragment:0000015614 SourceURL:file://localhost/Users/Vivian/Documents/Microsoft%20User%20Data/Saved%20Attachments/PressFeb2011.doc @font-face { font-family: “Times New Roman”; }@font-face { font-family: “Courier New”; }@font-face { font-family: “Wingdings”; }@font-face { font-family: “Gill Sans MT”; }@font-face { font-family: “Cambria”; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0in 0in 10pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: Cambria; }a:link, span.MsoHyperlink { color: blue; text-decoration: underline; }a:visited, span.MsoHyperlinkFollowed { color: purple; text-decoration: underline; }table.MsoNormalTable { font-size: 10pt; font-family: “Times New Roman”; } { }div.Section1 { page: Section1; }ol { margin-bottom: 0in; }ul { margin-bottom: 0in; }



School of Fine and Performing Arts



New profs include


Assistant Professor Juan M. Heredia teaches design and humanities. He studied architecture in Mexico and holds a PhD and a Masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania. His research and teaching focuses on history, theory, and design. He has published in Arquine and Bitacora (Mexico), On-Site Review (Canada), and Arkitekten (Denmark). In 2009 he co-organized the Second International Architecture and Phenomenology Conference held in Kyoto, Japan. His current writing focuses on 20th Century architecture in Latin America.


Assistant Professor Nora Wendl teaches design and humanities. She is co-editor, with Isabelle Loring Wallace, of Architectural Strategies in Contemporary Art (Ashgate 2012). Her material scholarship positions architecture as an amplification of culture; to this end, she has collaborated with a number of contemporary artists in the design and production of environments, including Theaster Gates and Harmen Liemburg. With the support of the Jack Straw Writer’s Program in Seattle, she is currently working on a manuscript of poems that imagine the history of the Farnsworth House through the eyes of its client, Dr. Edith Farnsworth (to be completed September 2011). She holds a Master of Architecture and a Bachelor of Architecture from Iowa State University, where she was the Pearl Hogrefe Fellow in Creative Writing.


Assistant Professor Aaron Whelton teaches design and digital media. His design research focuses on urban and infrastructural questions that are primarily investigated through his firm Whelton Architecture ( He won the Portland Firefighters Memorial Competition in 2010 as well as the competition ‘A New Infrastructure: Innovative Transit Solutions for Los Angeles’ in 2009. In 2010 his design for the David Campbell Memorial won an AIA Portland Chapter Unbuilt Citation Award. Aaron holds a Master of Architecture from University of California, Los Angeles and a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Kentucky.

Assistant Professor B.D. Wortham-Galvin teaches design and humanities. She has Masters degrees in Historic Preservation from the University of Pennsylvania and in Architecture from the University of Maryland. She also has a PhD in the History and Theory of Architecture from MIT. Her research focuses on how theories of cultural sustainability and the everyday can be applied to the design and stewardship of an adaptable built environment. She brings to PSU her non-profit organization, Urban Dialogues, Inc., which won the 2009 Outstanding Project of the Year Award from the Heart of Chesapeake Country Heritage Area Program for its community design work on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.


For information about all of our current faculty, visit


Will Bruder returns as Distinguished Visiting Professor of Urban Architecture

Internationally acclaimed architect Will Bruder is teaching for the second year at Portland State. He brings a unique creative perspective and unmatched experience in producing innovative, experientially rich architecture