2017 Richard Rogers Fellowship winners

2017 Richard Rogers Fellowship winners

Harvard University Graduate School of Design

2017 Richard Rogers Fellows (top to bottom, left to right): Shantel Blakely, Jose Castillo, Namik Mackic, Maik Novotny, Saidee Springall, Dirk van den Heuvel. Courtesy Harvard GSD.
February 17, 2017
2017 Richard Rogers Fellowship winners

Harvard University
Graduate School of Design (GSD)
Gund Hall
48 Quincy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138


Harvard GSD inaugurates residency program for architectural and urban research at the Wimbledon House in London

Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) is pleased to announce the winners of the 2017 Richard Rogers Fellowship, a new residency program hosted at the Wimbledon House, the landmarked residence designed by acclaimed architect Lord Richard Rogers for his parents in the late 1960s. Lord Richard and Lady Ruth Rogers generously gifted the house to Harvard GSD to create the program, an international platform that will bring together experts and practitioners from a broad range of disciplines and whose work is focused on the built environment and its capacity to advance the quality of human life. In Fall 2016, Harvard GSD issued a call for applications for the program’s first year of three-month residencies.

The inaugural class of fellows—who hail from Austria, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, and the United States—were selected from more than 200 applicants from around the world. “The spirit of the Fellowship is intended to carry forward and expand on Lord Rogers’ deep commitment to cities not as ends in themselves, but as a fundamental means of bettering human life,” said Harvard GSD Dean Mohsen Mostafavi. “At the GSD, our work is organized around the urgent issues cities are facing globally, a pedagogical approach requiring exploration and collaboration across disciplinary lines. We are excited about this opportunity to support and learn from research undertaken in the context of London’s thriving architecture, design, and art communities and vast institutional resources.”


Spring Fellows

Namik Mackic (Oslo) 
“The Return of the Group Form: A Comparative Speculation on Radical Urban Regeneration in London and Berlin”
Namik Mackic holds a degree in music from the Norwegian Academy of Music, philosophy from the University of Oslo, and Master in Design Studies from Harvard GSD. He is currently a research associate with Harvard Mellon Urban Initiative, and guest critic at the Rhode Island School of Design. His fellowship research compares trajectories of citizen-driven initiatives in two key capitals of post-Brexit, “migrant crisis”-stricken Europe, London and Berlin. His proposal highlights the role of refugees, immigrants, and other structurally disadvantaged populations, and projectively casts them as drivers of new forms of spatial development.

Maik Novotny (Vienna)
“The State of the Estate: A Tale of Two Cities”
Maik Novotny is an architect, planner, and teacher in the Department of Spatial and Sustainable Design at TU Vienna University. He is the architecture critic for the daily newspaper Der Standard and the weekly magazine Falter, and contributes to a variety of other media outlets. His London research addresses the current challenges for social housing in London and Vienna. His topic contrasts Vienna, which boasts a history of producing high-quality, widely accessibly housing, and postwar social housing in London, which has become stigmatized and frequently condemned as “sink-estates,” ever-threatened with demolition.


Summer Fellows

Jose Castillo (Mexico City) 
“On Food, Cooking, and the City: Learning From London”
Joe Castillo is the principal of the award-winning Mexico City–based firm a|911. Cofounded by Saidee Saidell in 2002, a|911 was recently named the most visionary architecture office in Mexico by Obras magazine. His proposal for the Richard Rogers Fellowship extends the research he initiated as a fellow of the Mexican National Endowment for the Arts. Recognizing cooking and eating as cultural, ecological and political actions with territorial and architectural implications, Castillo will investigate the way in which food and cooking transforms cities, drawing connections between urban food economies and pressing global problems such as climate change, inequality, and migration.  

Saidee Springall (Mexico City) 
“London and the Challenges of Affordable Housing”
Saidee Springall is the principal of Mexico City–based firm a|911. Since cofounding the firm with Jose Castillo in 2002, a|911 has designed and built over 2,000 units of affordable housing in Mexico City, and completed infrastructure and cultural projects as well as large-scale master plans for mixed-use developments. Saidell will use her London residency to research affordable housing in London, focusing in particular on the “social contract” established between the state, developers, civic agencies, and citizens. Building on her previous independent research, she aims to analyze policies and financial structures, as well as new models of community participation.


Fall Fellows

Shantel Blakely (Cambridge)
“Pattern Informed by Sensibility: Herbert Read on Art and Design”
Shantel Blakely holds an MArch from Princeton University, a PhD in the history and theory of architecture from Columbia University, and is currently completing an MA in Philosophy at Tufts University. Most recently, she managed the public lectures and conferences program at Harvard GSD. Her writings have appeared in PLOTLogAA Files, Avery Review, and Open Letters, and she has participated in a variety of exhibitions and symposia as an essayist, speaker, and advisor. Blakely will use her London residency to study the life and work of early-20th-century English poet-educator-anarchist Herbert Read who regarded art, as well as architecture and design, as a means to achieve social harmony.

Dirk van den Heuvel (Amsterdam)
“Socio-Plastics: Resituating New Brutalism and the British Welfare State”
Dirk van den Heuvel teaches architecture at the TU Delft and is the cofounder and head of the Jaap Bakema Study Centre at the Het Nieuwe Instituut in Rotterdam. Van den Heuvel was the curator of the exhibition Open: A Bakema Celebration, the official presentation of the Dutch Pavilion for the 14th International Architecture Exhibition at Venice Biennale (2014) and editor of the publication series DASH (Delft Architectural Studies on Housing). Van den Heuvel will use his residency to continue his research Alison and Peter Smithson in the context of the postwar British welfare state. He will focus on the Smithsons’ Robin Hood Gardens estate, examining the interrelations between architecture, planning, and housing policies.


The 2017 Fellowship Selection Committee includes:Richard Burdett, Ivan Harbour, K. Michael Hays, Hanif Kara, Mohsen Mostafavi, Farshid Moussavi, Patricia Roberts, and Lord Richard Rogers.

The 2018 Richard Rogers Fellowship cycle will begin accepting applications in October 2017, with a deadline of early December. Please direct press inquiries to [email protected].


Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD) presents inaugural Richard Rogers Fellowship winners

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