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Andrew Witt / Gehry Technologies

Gui Auditorium / Knowlton Hall
March 11, 2015 - 5:30pm

Andrew Witt will present the lecture "Formulations: Singular Mathematics in Design" in Knowlton Hall’s Gui Auditorium at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 11. The lecture is free and open to the public and is sponsored by the Paul D. Morrill Memorial Lecture Fund. Witt is designer based in Los Angeles where he is Director of Research at Gehry Technologies. He is also an Assistant Professor in Practice at Harvard GSD and co-founder of Certain Measures, a new incubator for scalable design that combines rigorous design thinking with technology innovation. He was previously a director at Gehry Technologies’ Paris office, where he consulted on parametric design, geometric approaches, new technologies and integrated practice for clients including Gehry Partners, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, UN Studio and Coop Himmelb(l)au.

Through computation, quantitative models and mathematical methods have become essential to design processes and a fundamental catalyst for innovation. These methods bring with them regimes of knowledge encapsulation, distribution, and reconfiguration that are transforming not only the process and products of design, but also its economic practice and epistemology. Mathematical systems have become tools for the dramatic scaling-up of design ideas, changing the primacy of context in design from a context of place to a context of operationally represented natural and artificial ecologies. Examining themes such as network effects, flatpack-freeform problems, and constructible topologies, Witt will combine historical examples with his research at Harvard, Gehry Technologies, and his design consultancy Certain Measures to trace the evolution of mathematical systems in design.

Trained as both an architect and mathematician, Witt has a particular interest in a technically synthetic and logically rigorous approach to form. His work and research have been published in Surface, Space, Linear Algebra and its Applications and Linear and Multilinear Algebra, and shown at Storefront for Art and Architecture. He has taught courses on digital design at Ecole Speciale d'Architecture and SCI-Arc, and has lectured at MIT, ETH, EPFL and Angewandte. Witt received an M.Arch (with distinction, AIA medal, John Thayer Scholarship) and an M.Des (History and Theory, with distinction) from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design.