Duvall Decker firm featured on World-Architects

May 22nd, 2015 Comments Off

Photo: Timothy Hursley (via world-architects.com)

Photo: Timothy Hursley (via world-architects.com)

World-Architects.com, the premium network of outstanding architects, landscape architects, engineers, interior designers, lighting consultants and architectural photographers, recently featured Duvall Decker Architects Mississippi Department of Information Technology Services Cooperative Data Center.

“Two buildings with disparate functions and programing create an ensemble, in which an expanded field of potential experience is promoted. A monolithic, poured-in-place hardened concrete data center and a flexible, open steel frame office building, are positioned and shaped as sisters.”

Duvall Decker Architects specializes in public buildings, state institutions, school and university buildings, affordable housing and planning. The firm is a recognized leader and has received state, regional and national awards for design excellence. Most recently the design for the Jobie L. Martin Classroom Building at Hinds Community College was honored with a 2013 AIA Committee on Architecture for Education Excellence Award. The Oak Ridge House received a 2013 AIA Gulf State Region Honor Award. The Bennie G. Thompson Academic & Civil Rights Research Center earned a 2013 AIA Gulf State Region Honor Citation and a 2011 Design with Brick President’s Award. The firm’s work has frequently been published and highlighted in publications such as the Journal of Architectural Education, Houses for All Regions, a book published by AIA’s Custom Residential Architects Network, Design Bureau Magazine, the Oxford American and in exhibits such as AIA’s “Design for the Decades.”

Anne Marie Decker (MSU S|ARC Class of 1994) is principal with and her partner Roy Decker. Anne Marie was the College of Architecture, Art and Design’s Alumni Fellow in 2009; most recently, she served as the Eminent Architect of Practice at the Jackson Center and was the 2015 Jean P. Giles Memorial Lecturer for the school’s annual Recognition Day.

Click here to see the feature.

School of Architecture alumni’s firm, MS-ICAA instrumental in Welty Biennial

May 21st, 2015 Comments Off

Tracy and Kimberly Ward’s firm (MSU S|ARC Class of 1987), Benchmark Design PC, has been working tirelessly for almost three years on the architectural reproduction aspects of the Welty Biennial – namely the sonar scanning of the “new” Capitol pediment (tympanum) in Jackson and the columns of Windsor near Port Gibson.

This first edition of the Welty Biennial is titled “Classical Mississippi” and, therefore, appropriately reached out for the aid of the Southeast Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art. Tracy Ward is chairman of the Mississippi Committee. Three full-scale replicas of Windsor’s 45-foot-tall columns stand outside the museum, and a 6-foot-tall Corinthian capital sits on the exhibit floor inside the museum.

The first Welty Biennial includes 12 weeks of exhibits on display at the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson through July 3. Exhibits include ninety double-exposure photographs by American surrealist Clarence John Laughlin, nine modernist constellation sculptures by James Seawright, and an up-to-date interpretation of the sculptural figures on the 1903 Capitol pediment. Other related events, installations, performances and contests will also take place throughout the city during the biennial. All exhibits and events are free and open to the public.

For more information about the Welty Biennial, visit http://weltybiennial.org/

Alumni, ICAA to host event in Natchez

May 20th, 2015 Comments Off


Architecture student presents at international education symposium

May 20th, 2015 Comments Off

MSU architecture major Ryan Fierro recently presented his research at the 2015 North American Materials Education Symposium. (Photo by Assistant Professor Jacob Gines)

MSU architecture major Ryan Fierro recently presented his research at the 2015 North American Materials Education Symposium. (Photo by Assistant Professor Jacob Gines)

Via msstate.edu

A Mississippi State architecture major from Madison, Alabama, is adding a major international-level achievement to his resume.

Ryan M. Fierro, a third-year student in the university’s School of Architecture, recently presented two research reports at the 2015 North American Materials Education Symposium. He is a graduate of Pope John Paul II Catholic High School and an MSU President’s List Scholar.

Held this year at Ohio State University, NAMES’s sixth international meeting brought together educators, researchers, students and practitioners from a range of fields to discuss the teaching of materials.

“Building Materials Stewardship and Sustainable Practices” and “Mapping the Regional Landscape of Building Materials” were the titles of Fierro’s visual presentations.

When beginning research last summer, Fierro said he initially focused on building-product manufacturing processes for wood, glass, steel and concrete and their effects on the atmosphere and buildings in which they exist. The focus shifted, however, as he began to understand more about how certain byproducts may be used as substitutes for portland cement, the chief binding agent in concrete, he explained.

His findings were so impressive that assistant professor Jacob Gines, Fierro’s architecture faculty mentor, encouraged him to consider submitting his work at the NAMES gathering.

“The environmental impacts of producing portland cement are well documented,” Gines said. “Ryan’s research is eye-opening and informative regarding various alternatives to portland cement as a key ingredient in concrete.”

Fierro, who serves as Gines’ teaching assistant, said he built on early research findings to conclude the project with outlines of ways various substances similar to cement could be substituted and, in the process, how each could have more positive impacts on the environment.

“By its very nature, the production of portland cement is catastrophically bad for the environment,” Fierro explained. “For every pound of cement produced, an equal pound of carbon-dioxide is released into the atmosphere.”

Gines said he is very proud of the professionalism demonstrated both in Fierro’s research achievement and symposium address. “Presenting to a room full of material scientists and engineers can be daunting for an undergraduate architecture student, but Ryan did an amazing job and won the respect of many in the process,” he said.

For his part, Fierro expressed hope that the research can provide useful referential guides for designers and builders who may be considering materials covered in his reports.

Architecture professor receives service-learning grant

May 19th, 2015 Comments Off

Alexis Gregory

Alexis Gregory

Alexis Gregory, assistant professor in the School of Architecture, received a $500 Center for Advancement of Service-Learning Excellence (CASLE) Mini-Grant for 2015-2016.

Gregory will use the grant funds for her fall 2015 fourth-year studio’s Educational Garden project working with the Boys and Girls Club.

Gregory is working with a graphic design student, Lorianna Livingston, who also received the Dawn Brancheau Service-Learning Scholarship and $500 of funding to complete educational graphics and signage for the project.

CAAD well represented at Undergraduate Research Symposium

May 19th, 2015 Comments Off

By Sasha Steinberg | MSU

Nearly two dozen students are being recognized at Mississippi State for successful faculty-guided research efforts during the concluding school year.

During the Undergraduate Research Symposium held Thursday [April 23] at the university’s Judy and Bobby Shackouls Honors College, 23 undergraduates received awards for work conducted in the fall 2014 and spring 2015 semesters.

Projects submitted for the competition were assigned to one of four categories, including arts and humanities, biological sciences and engineering, physical sciences and engineering, and social sciences. In recognition of the university’s Carnegie Community Engagement Classification, a community engagement and service learning track also was included for the third year.

A team of 55 campus faculty members representing a cross-section of academic areas served as judges for the competition.

Featured speaker for the symposium was Lori M. Bruce, dean of the MSU Graduate School and associate vice president for academic affairs. A William L. Giles Distinguished Professor, she has served as the principal investigator or co-principal investigator on more than 20 funded research grants and contracts, totaling approximately $20 million from federal agencies.

In addition to the honors college, the symposium is sponsored by the offices of the Provost and Executive President and Research and Economic Development, along with the Center for the Advancement of Service-Learning Excellence and MSU Extension Service.

Teams representing the College of Architecture, Art and Design included:
“Improving on Outreach Design”
Anna Barr (ARC)
Patrick Brown (ARC)
Lucas Posey (ARC)
(Faculty Advisor: Assistant Professor Alexis Gregory)
Second Place, Arts and Humanities
Third Place, Community Engagement and Service Learning

“Comprehensive Tectonics: Technical Building Assemblies from the Ground to the Sky”
Ashton Aime (ARC)
Edward Holmes (ARC)
Cody Smith (ARC)
(Faculty Advisor: Assistant Professor Alexis Gregory)

“A Study of Air Infiltration Rates of Residential Construction Over Forty Years”
Ria Bennett (ARC)
Bill Plott (BCS)
Cody Smith (ARC)
(Faculty Advisor: Assistant Professor Emily McGlohn)

“Building Material Stewardship and Sustainable Practices | Mapping the Regional Landscape of Building Materials”
Ryan Fierro (ARC)
(Faculty Advisor: Assistant Professor Jacob Gines)
(Click here to read more about Fierro’s research.)

“LEED Green Associate Online Training Course”
Frankie Jackson (BCS)
Thomas Vinton (BCS)
Faculty Advisor: Assistant Professor Tom Leathem

CAAD holds alumni reunion in Atlanta

May 18th, 2015 Comments Off

The Mississippi State University College of Architecture, Art, and Design hosted an alumni reunion and reception on May 14, 2015, in Atlanta, Ga.

Held at the Atlanta Marriot Marquis hotel and coinciding with the 2015 AIA Convention, the informal gathering was a time for CAAD alumni, friends and family to re-connect, visit and network as well as get updates on what is currently happening within the college.

 The event was made possible by a generous gift from Stevens & Wilkinson.

MSU architecture major takes second in national scholarship competition

May 4th, 2015 Comments Off

2015 Gensler Diversity Award from CAADatMSU on Vimeo. (Video by David Garraway | MSU TV Center)

Photo by Keats Haupt

Photo by Keats Haupt

Mississippi State’s College of Architecture, Art and Design offers a unique collaborative experience for students, and these efforts are helping students get national recognition.

Aryn Phillips, a fourth-year architecture major from Olive Branch, recently took second place in the seventh annual Gensler Diversity Scholarship Competition. Phillips credited the college’s many collaborative efforts for her success.

“We do a collaborative studio with building construction science and projects with both BCS and interior design students, and that’s what Gensler is really big on,” she said. “It’s a global design firm; we do a little of that here, and that’s unique from other schools.”

As a second place winner, Phillips, the daughter of William and Luretha Phillips and a 2011 graduate of Desoto Central High School in Southaven, will receive $5,000 from Gensler to put toward her academic studies. Because of the scholarship, she was also awarded a paid summer internship at Gensler’s New York offices, which she will start on June 2.

For the competition, Phillips submitted a project designed in the fall 2014 Ivywild Studio, taught by Assistant Professor Alexis Gregory. Phillips’ project, which also won honorable mention in her studio, was the design of a symbiotic district. The project included a brewery, bakery, restaurant and ice cream shop that utilized the recycle-reuse process called “functional symbiosis.” (See more on the IvyWild Studio.)

Phillips said she was encouraged by her professors to enter Gensler’s competition and received a recommendation from the director of the school, F.L. Crane Professor Michael Berk.

She also was encouraged by the fact that one of her fellow classmates, Larry Travis, won first place in last year’s competition.

“MSU winning twice is pretty significant; I don’t realize that while I’m in school,” she said, adding “And just seeing that makes me understand how well prepared we are through this program.”

Phillips is currently applying for a cooperative education program for next year. After her fifth-year of study in Jackson, she plans to pursue a master’s degree in urban design.

“Winning the 2015 Gensler Diversity Scholarship and having the opportunity to intern with such a prestigious firm is a great honor,” said Phillips. “This scholarship and Gensler’s investment in my architectural education gives me the confidence and motivation to continue to pursue my interests and further my career in architecture.”

Gensler, a global architecture, design and planning firm, has awarded nearly $200,000 in academic scholarship to students and graduates over the last 15 years.

The Gensler Diversity Scholarship is open to African-American students enrolled in a U.S. not-for-profit educational institution who will begin their final year of a NAAB-accredited architecture program in the fall. For more information about the Gensler Diversity Scholarship, visit http://www.gensler.com/uploads/document/378/file/2015_Diversity_Scholarship.pdf

Read the story on MSU’s website.

Read the story featured on WCBI.

School of Architecture faculty, student receive university research honor

May 1st, 2015 Comments Off

Brooke Dorman, Leah Kemp and Alexis Gregory (center, left to right) were honored with 2015 research awards. (Photo by Beth Wynn | Mississippi State University)

Brooke Dorman, Leah Kemp, and Alexis Gregory (left to right) stand with MSU President Mark Keenum and CAAD Dean Jim West. (Photo by Beth Wynn | Mississippi State University)

Forty-nine Mississippi State students, faculty and staff are 2015 selections for exceptional research and leadership honors.

Honorees, their guests and senior administrators gathered for a campus awards luncheon Thursday [April 30].

As a major student-oriented research university, Mississippi State is improving the quality of life “for millions of people here at home and around the world,” MSU President Mark E. Keenum said.

“Your research is helping make our public schools better, our communities stronger, our food safer, our vehicles more efficient, our critical infrastructure more secure, and our farms and factories both more profitable and more environmentally friendly,” he said.

Before an audience of friends and colleagues in the Hunter Henry Center’s Hal and Linda Parker Ballroom, professor of art Brent Funderburk received the afternoon’s top honor: the 2015 Ralph E. Powe Research Excellence Award.

A Charlotte, North Carolina native, Funderburk has exhibited his mixed-media paintings and drawing in 32 one-person exhibitions in museums, universities and galleries, and has presented his artwork, often with awards, in over 70 invited or juried (peer-reviewed) regional, national, and international exhibitions. He has given more than 100 invited or juried illustrated lecture-performances to galleries, museums, conferences, and professional organizations. His artwork is represented in museum, university and private collections across the country, in 26 states, and in Canada.

Funderburk studied with artist-author Edward A. Reep in the School of Art at East Carolina University, where he received BFA and MFA degrees in painting/drawing. His research in watercolor and water media has been shared in lectures and workshops and in his book “Flying World” (2011).

His research has also focused on the life, art and influence of 20th Century American artist/naturalist Walter Inglis Anderson and his contemporaries through research, publications, curating exhibits, presenting lectures, developing courses, and in the ongoing development of a multidisciplinary research center at MSU. These efforts have enlivened a critical national discussion on the work of Anderson. His curated exhibit, “Ecstasy — The Mystical Landscapes of Walter Anderson,” has toured U.S. museums, with Funderburk’s lectures, since 2006.

Named the official artist of the 2010 USA International Ballet Competition, Funderburk has had artwork featured in international publications such as Creative Quarterly, Graphis, and Studio Visit Magazine.

The Powe Award is a memorial to the MSU alumnus and longtime research vice president who died in 1996. It is selected at the university level from nominations received from the MSU community.

The annual research awards program honors individuals who contribute significantly to MSU’s mission of research. In addition to faculty, it recognizes and rewards students and staff for accomplishments and creative endeavors, as well as for increasing awareness of the university’s many research programs and capabilities.

The program and banquet are co-sponsored by the offices of the vice presidents for Research and Economic Development and the Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine.

“Our research enterprise is strong and growing thanks to our world-class faculty, students and staff, and I always look forward to recognizing them here,” said David Shaw, vice president for research and economic development.

Greg Bohach, vice president for agriculture, forestry and veterinary medicine, echoed Shaw’s assessment.

“The awards banquet is one of my favorite events because it’s an opportunity to recognize the commitment to excellence of our university’s scientists, staff and students, and their collaborative efforts,” he said.

Other 2015 research award winners include (alphabetically, by academic unit):

–Bagley College of Engineering: Yong Fu, faculty; Teresa Stewart, research support; Trenton Ricks, graduate student; and Dexter Duckworth, undergraduate student.

–College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station: Jason Bond, faculty; Josh White, research support; Caitlin Hart, graduate student; and Amber Kay, undergraduate student.

–College of Architecture, Art and Design: Alexis Gregory, faculty; Leah Kemp, research support; and J. Brooke Dorman, undergraduate student.

–College of Arts and Sciences: John Bickle, faculty; Rita Christopher, research support; Sara Shields-Menard, graduate student; and Sally White, undergraduate student.

–College of Business: James Vardaman, faculty; and Nathan Hammond, graduate student.

–College of Education: April Heiselt, faculty; Anne Steverson, research support; Sonum Sanjanwala, graduate student; and Scott Pope, undergraduate student.

–College of Forest Resources: Donald L. Grebner, faculty; Ray Iglay, research support; Zach Loman, graduate student; and Lisa Garrigues, undergraduate student.

–College of Veterinary Medicine: Lesya Pinchuk, faculty; Hossam Abdelhamed, research support; Graham Rosser, graduate student; and Ethan Woodyard, undergraduate student.

–Office of Research and Economic Development: Ronald Gatewood, research support.

–University Centers and Institutes: Patrick Fitzpatrick, faculty; Rooban Thirumalai, research support; Kala Marapereddy, graduate student; and Evan McBroom, undergraduate student.

Also honored were new graduates of the university’s 2014-2015 George Duke Humphrey Faculty Leadership Program:

–Craig Aarhus, associate professor of music and associate director of bands;

–Ashli Brown, associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology and Mississippi State Chemical Laboratory director;

–Angus Catchot, Extension professor of entomology;

–Renee Clary, associate professor of geosciences and Dunn-Seiler Geology Museum director;

–Diana Eubanks, College of Veterinary Medicine associate clinical professor;

–Donald L. Grebner, professor of forestry;

–William Anthony Hay, associate professor of history and Institute of the Humanities director;

–Brien Henry, associate professor of plant and soil sciences;

–Rocky Lemus, associate Extension/research professor of plant and soil sciences;

–Robert McMillen, associate professor and Social Science Research Center associate director;

–Stephen Middleton, professor and director of African American studies;

–Jane Parish, Extension/research professor of animal and dairy sciences.

Architecture, BCS students create tensile membrane structures

April 17th, 2015 Comments Off

Building construction science and architecture students designed and constructed tensile membrane structures (tailgating tents) as part of Associate Professor John Poros’s combined Structures II studio course.
The students tested their designs in The Junction and invited faculty and others to join them for an informal review.

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