“Among cultural formations, architecture occupies a prominent position because it bears the potential to express social relations and power structures at certain critical moments in crystallized forms.” 1 - Zeynep Çelik
This past spring, MASS Design Group has launched its inaugural solo exhibition, entitled “Buildings that Heal: Towards an Architecture (of Impact)," at the Boston Architectural College’s McCormick Gallery. MASS Design Group is the current Hideo Sasaki Distinguished Visiting Critic at the BAC and is, in conjunction with the exhibition, conducting a spring studio led by MASS’s Rwanda Program Director, Sierra Bainbridge.
“Buildings that Heal” is a cross section of MASS’s work over its first five years of practice and is an attempt to re-orient architecture back to a position of relevance in contemporary global culture. It illustrates the firm’s commitment to balancing top-down strategy with grassroots development through a breadth of work in design, education and policy initiatives worldwide. The exhibition also introduces a new framework of metric evaluation being implemented at MASS which anticipates and tracks each project’s quantifiable impact through design and construction in the categories of Employment, Education and Environment.
While architectural representation has tended towards that of the finite product, MASS used the exhibition to represent its buildings as fragments within larger generative processes of architecture. The exhibition draws inspiration from natural history museums where artifacts must be placed in context, be it environmental or evolutionary, in order to be relevant for biological or anthropological study. “Buildings that Heal” is a composition of an evolutionary chain of architecture – an ecosystem that MASS has begun to develop in its early years and which continues to instruct its work to date.
“Buildings that Heal” opened on Tuesday, April 10th and will run until May 6th. Entry is free.
320 Newbury Street, Boston, MA
Mon-Thurs: 8:00AM-10:30PM / Fri: 8:00AM-9:00PM / Sat: 9:00AM-5:00PM / Sun: Noon-7:00PM
1 Zeynep Çelik, “Cultural Intersections: Re-visioning Architecture and the City in the Twentieth Century,” in Russell Ferguson, ed., At the End of the Century: One Hundred Years of Architecture (Los Angeles: Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles & Harry N. Abrams, 1998), 195.