Chicago Architecture Biennial Open until January 7

Tom Harris

MAKE NEW HISTORY is in its final weeks in Chicago. The event is free and open to the public until January 7, 2018. The Chicago Cultural Center holds the main exhibition, with several additional anchor sites around Chicago.

To hear Artistic Directors Sharon Johnston & Mark Lee’s recent appearance on Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s podcast, search Chicago Stories with Rahm Emanuel on iTunes.

To hear Sharon & Mark speak with KCRW’s Frances Anderton of Design & Architecture, visit link below.

Sharon Johnston at Design Miami/ Wed, Dec 6

The Power of Architecture to Impact Cities: Miami and Chicago

Wednesday, December 6
4:30pm – 5:30pm

Sharon Johnston will participate in this conversation with David Hartt and Shaun Donovan, moderated by Tom Healy.

Design Miami/ is adjacent to the Miami Beach Convention Center, a short walk from Art Basel in Miami Beach.

For additional information, visit website below.

Mark Lee at Met Museum Symposium, New York, December 9

Mark Lee will join the 2017 symposium, presenting the Chicago Architecture Biennial.

In Our Time: A Year of Architecture in a Day
Saturday, December 9
At The Met Fifth Avenue
The Grace Rainey Rogers Auditorium
1000 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10028

For additional information and to register for the symposium, visit link below.

Sharon Johnston & Mark Lee Honored by Society of Architectural Historians


The Society of Architectural Historians presented the SAH Awards for Architectural Excellence at its 8th Annual Awards Gala on Friday, November 17, 2017, at the Racquet Club of Chicago.

Sharon Johnston & Mark Lee were honored with the Award for Excellence in ​Public Engagement with the Built Environment.

The Society of Architectural Historians is a nonprofit membership organization that promotes the study, interpretation, and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes, and urbanism worldwide. The Awards Gala provides SAH with critical financial resources to carry out its programs locally, nationally, and internationally. Fellow recipients were Ralph Johnson, FAIA, LEED AP (Award for Excellence in Design, Planning, and Sustainability) and Col (IL) Jennifer N. Pritzker, IL ARNG (Ret) (Award for Excellence in Architectural Stewardship).

For more information about the Society of Architectural Historians, visit link below.

Johnston Marklee at Art Institute of Chicago, Wed, November 15

Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee, co–artistic directors of the 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial, discuss their vision for the theme of this year\'s biennial, “Make New History.”

Wednesday, November 15, 2017
6:30 – 7:30pm
Rubloff Auditorium
The Art Institute of Chicago
230 S. Columbus Dr.

Free, no registration required.

For more info on this event and Chicago Architecture Biennial, visit link below.

JML at Annual Convention & Design Expo, Austin, TX, Saturday, Nov 11

78th Annual Convention & Design Expo
Presented by the Texas Society of Architects

Austin Convention Center
500 E. Cesar Chavez St.
Austin, TX

Saturday, November 11
11:30am – 12:30pm
The Menil Drawing Institute with Nicholas Hofstede, Managing Director, Johnston Marklee

This session will discuss the new Menil Drawing Institute. Designed by Los Angeles-based Johnston Marklee, it is the first freestanding work of architecture built exclusively for the exhibition, conservation, and study of modern and contemporary drawings. The project includes a new energy-efficient central plant, or Energy House, serving multiple museum buildings, new infrastructure, and a new park. The work proceeds from a 2009 master plan by David Chipperfield and opens up the campus to further future development.

• Sheryl Kolasinski, FAIA | Deputy Director/COO | The Menil Collection
• Nicholas Hofstede | Managing Director | Johnston Marklee
• Melissa McDonnell Lujan | Director of Administration, Budget and Operations | The Menil Collection

For more information, visit link below.

Johnston Marklee & Peter Fischli at Barbican Centre, London, November 10

Architecture on Stage: Sharon Johnston, Mark Lee and Peter Fischli
Friday, November 10, 2017

Barbican Centre
Frobisher Auditorium 1
Level 4
Silk Street, London

The annual John Edwards lecture presents leading international architects in conversation with influential figures – from artists and filmmakers to writers and philosophers. This year\'s talk is being given by the architects Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee, founding director of the Los Angeles based Johnston Marklee, and the renowned Swiss artist Peter Fischli.

For additional info and to purchase tickets, follow link below.

Johnston Marklee at UCLA A.UD Lecture Series, 10/23

Courtesy of Chicago Architecture Biennial, Steve Hall © Hall Merrick

The UCLA Department of Architecture and Urban Design (A.UD) presents the Chicago Architecture Biennale Roundtable with biennale Artistic Directors Mark Lee and Sharon Johnston of Los Angeles-based architecture firm, Johnston Marklee. UCLA A.UD-affiliated architects and scholars participating in the biennale include Erin Besler, Sarah Hearne, Wonne Ickx, Andrew Kovacs, Jimenez Lai, and, Sylvia Lavin.

Monday, October 23, 2017
6:30 p.m.
Perloff Hall, Decafe
Price: Free

Perloff Hall is located in North East Campus, just off Hilgard Ave.
Parking is available in Lot 3.

For more information, visit link below.

Photo: Installation view of Sylvia Lavin with Erin Besler, Jessica Colangelo and Norman Kelly, Super Models, 2017

Johnston Marklee at Architectural Record Conference in NYC, 10/19


Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee will present at the 2017 Architectural Record Innovation Conference East: The Future of Architecture and the Public Realm.

Thursday, October 19th
Masonic Hall
46 West 24th Street
New York, NY 10010

2:00pm – 2:40pm
“The Third Place” with Sharon Johnston & Mark Lee

Borrowing sociologist Ray Oldenburg’s term, architects Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee will explore ideas about community, urbanism and the essential nature of un-programmed, flexible public space, as reflected in such projects as their recent intervention in the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and their design for the Menil Drawing Institute in Houston, opening next spring. They will also discuss the 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial, which they co-curated, and its theme “Make New History.”

For more information about the conference and registration details, visit link below.

UCLA Renovation & Addition Wins LafargeHolcim Foundation Prize


Johnston Marklee’s UCLA Warner Graduate Art Studio Renovation & Addition project was awarded an Acknowledgement Prize from the LafargeHolcim Foundation at their awards ceremony in Chicago, IL on Friday, October 13. In its 5th Cycle, the Regional LafargeHolcim Foundation Awards acknowledges excellence in sustainable construction.

For more information on the 2017 Regional Awards and for a full list of award recipients, visit link below.

Chicago Architecture Biennial Opens September 16


The 2017 Chicago Architecture Biennial unites a main exhibition at the Chicago Cultural Center with a selection of off-site projects, a broad range of aligned exhibitions, and an extensive series of programming for the public that will serve Chicagoans and visitors alike.

“Make New History” is the theme of the second Chicago Architecture Biennial and the title of the main exhibition, curated by Artistic Directors Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee. Its installations and immersive environments will activate the full space of the Chicago Cultural Center and feature over 140 participants from around the world.

The Biennial is free and open to the public from September 16, 2017 to January 7, 2018.

For additional information and details, visit the Chicago Architecture Biennial website, link below.

MCA Chicago Unveils New Building Redesign by Architects Johnston Marklee

Kendall McCaugherty, Hall + Merrick

Madeleine Grynsztejn, Pritzker Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, officially opened the dynamic new building redesign by Los Angeles-based architects Sharon Johnston and Mark Lee of Johnston Marklee on Wednesday, September 6.

Grynsztejn says, “Johnston Marklee understands the strength of our Josef Paul Kleihues-designed building, and they carry a deep respect of history throughout their architectural practice. Their legacy of stellar work—increasingly referenced as a leader in the field—resonates strongly with our interest in making thoughtful interventions to our building, including a new restaurant called Marisol. With this redesign, our distinctive space becomes even more welcoming and flexible for our audiences.”

Johnston Marklee (JML) redesigned select public spaces of the museum to create three major new offerings: Marisol, the ground-floor destination restaurant with an immersive art environment by international artist Chris Ofili; a social engagement space called the Commons on the second floor with an installation by Pedro y Juana; and a new third floor with classrooms and a flexible meeting space that puts learning at the very center of the museum. These new public spaces are connected by a dramatic new staircase that honors the MCA’s original iconic staircase, and an elegant new vaulted ceiling that recalls the barrel vaults in the fourth-floor galleries. JML’s design of these welcoming and vibrant new spaces reflects the changing needs of a 21st-century contemporary art museum while maintaining the integrity of the Josef Paul Kleihues-designed building opened in 1996. This major $16-million renovation converts 12,000 square feet of interior space and coincides with the MCA’s 50th anniversary.

Architect Sharon Johnston says, “We wanted the redesign to respect the history of the building’s grid-based rationalism but create a more natural flow that offers new opportunities for how audiences can interact with the new spaces. Our approach focused on the visitor and the reciprocity between galleries and communal areas that blurs their boundaries and produces more active, multi-use spaces through the building. The idea is that the new spaces can be redefined by artists and audiences over time and will add a lightness and warmth to the building.”

To complement the work of Johnston Marklee, Grynsztejn assembled a creative team comprised of renowned Turner Prize-winning British painter Chris Ofili to create the restaurant environment; Mexico City-based design duo Pedro y Juana who designed a geometric hanging-indoor garden oasis for the Commons engagement space; and Chicago chef Jason Hammel, who delivers an exciting new menu as the chef of Marisol.

Grynsztejn says, “We are thrilled to bring together this world-class artistic team to create this new concept that interweaves art, learning, design, and food throughout the MCA’s public spaces. These creative artists represent both local and global perspectives—their collaboration and mutual inspiration positions the MCA to be a place where today’s visitors can have unparalleled encounters.”

For review of MCA Redesign by Blair Kamin of Chicago Tribune, visit link below:

Chicago-Milan Sister City Event, July 2017

Fondazione Riccardo Catella

Sharon and Mark participated in a discussion with Rahm Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago, and Giuseppe Sala, Mayor of Milan, at the Fondazione Riccardo Catella in Milan, Italy. Hosted by the Chicago-Milan Sister City Committee, the discussion surrounded the upcoming Chicago Architecture Biennial, the role of design in future cities, and the cultural relationship between Chicago and Milan.

The Chicago Architecture Biennial opens to the public on September 16, 2017. For more information, visit link below.

Mark Lee at Columbia University GSAPP, NYC - 7/25


Mark Lee will participate in the Arguments Lecture Series at GSAPP, discussing the book HOUSE IS A HOUSE IS A HOUSE IS A HOUSE IS A HOUSE: Architectures and Collaborations of Johnston Marklee.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017
Wood Auditorium
Columbia University GSAPP
Advanced Architectural Design

Mark Lee at Demario Marritimo.KM-278 - Senigallia, Italy


Mark Lee will participate in Demario Marritimo.KM-278. For one night, the Marzocca beach is transformed into a contemporary stage in a series of workshops, debates, performances, video and sound installations, DJ sets, readings, and tastings.

July 21, 2017
6pm - 6am

Lungomare Italia,11
Marzocca di Senigallia

For more information and schedule, visit the link below.

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