The Catholic University of America

Comprehensive Building
Design Studio


Buildings of Memories/House of Death


Buildings of Memories / Houses of Death
The work of the Comprehensive Building Design Studio
CUA School of Architecture and Planning

Exhibition at the District Architecture Center at 421 7th Street NW Washington DC
January 7 – February 7, 2015

Opening Reception on Wednesday, January 14 at 6:00 – 7:30pm

Exhibit Description:
The emotional and spiritual dimensions of architecture underpin the work shared in this exhibition. The Aedes Mortis (House of Death) confronts death, mourning and loss. The Aedificium Memoriarum (Building of Memories) challenges designers to extract the essence of the poetic and the spiritual, to celebrate the figurative and literal weight of the gravestones, to fulfill the expectations and requirements of the conservation labs, and to address its “front yard” of the field of cemetery markers. The expressive potential of materiality, light, color, and textures seek a balance with the functional requirements of the building programs.

Our collective goal is not to simply present “competent, economic, and utilitarian” buildings. Likewise, it is not to remain in the realm of the “conceptual theorizing.” We seek to establish a lucid, poetic, and strong conceptual framework of ideas tested in the design, development, and tectonic resolution of the Aedificium Memoriarum and the Aedes Mortis for Historic Congressional Cemetery in Washington DC.

This exhibit highlights a successful bridge between the academic studio and the professional one. As Director of the Comprehensive Building Design Studio, Associate Professor Julie Ju-Youn Kim fostered partnerships with leading professionals and their firms to support the goals of integration in this design studio. Our partners include the following: Rod Garrett, FAIA, SOM; Duncan Lyons, RIBA, Gensler; Robert Berry, AIA, RTKL; Scott Kilbourn, AIA, Perkins Eastman; Anik Jhaveri, AIA, Jacobs; and Doug Dahlkemper, AIA, SmithGroup/JJR.