GRADUATION SPEECH 2015

Fredag den 26. juni 2015 blev der afholdt en ceremoni på Rendsburggade 14 for de dimitterende kandidatstuderende på Arkitektur & Design inden for Arkitektur, Industrielt Design og Urbant Design. Billederne er fra ceremonien for ingeniørerne med speciale i Arkitektur, hvor de fik deres eksamensbeviser og en inspirerende tale med på vejen holdt af adjunkt på Arkitektur & Design, Marie Frier Hvejsel:

Dear Fellow Architect-Engineers!

First of all, congratulations to all of you and to your friends and families who are here to celebrate you today. Secondly thank you for giving me the honour of speaking for you on this particular day – You all worked so hard to get here, and finally you have reached this important milestone in your lives – I promise that this speech will be shorter than my lectures.

Architecture – the spaces that make up our everyday surroundings are in principle magic: There are spaces like Jørn Utzon’s marvellous opera in Sydney that have become the symbol of a whole continent as well as a meeting point enriching the everyday life for citizens and visitors alike. There are spaces like Frank Lloyd Wright’s Johnson Wax complex in which the architecture itself becomes an enriching part of the identity of a company and the people working there. There are spaces like Arne Jacobsen’s Søholm project that transform the experience of a series of otherwise rigid row houses limited in size into a unique and three-dimensional interrelation of interior and exterior spaces enriching the life of the families inhabiting them. There are spaces that are capable of gathering people, of revealing a magnificent view to us. There are even spaces capable of creating a magnificent view where there is none, as well as there are spaces that, believe it or not, can suggest and enhance the sense of a kiss.

By teaching you the integration of the aesthetic and the technical dimensions of architecture towards becoming architect-engineers we have tried to exemplify that each of the spaces that I have just referred to have begun as ideas and have been realized through a complex unification of aesthetics and technique.

You have now completed 5 years of studies, and you are all ready to enter the professional context. Our profession, the profession that you have chosen, is fascinating but also demanding: Just think about the yearlong struggle that governed the realization of Utzon’s opera. The realm of the building industry is complex and inherently multidisciplinary. When new buildings are realized multiple parties; clients, architects, engineers, entrepreneurs, builders, suppliers etc. are involved, and so are complex and often tight economies and political mechanisms. This is a potential as well as a threat to the discipline in which the spaces that make up our everyday surroundings risk being, and quite often are, realized as mere structural frameworks rather than inviting spaces of residing.

To maintain the big picture arriving at final spaces that make a difference, that provides experiences beyond mere practicality, the realization process involves a complex orchestration of structural and material technical insight and innovation, knowledge about sustainability and the building industry, environmental considerations ranging from the urban scale to specific indoor climatic solutions for individual rooms just to name a few. By teaching you to integrate the aesthetic and the technical dimensions of architecture we have tried to equip you for this context.

The building industry is in desperate need of specialists that are experts in for example Building Information Modelling or life cycle analyses, but also generalists that can take on the role of project management. Likewise the building industry is in need of empathetic creators that know how to visualise their ideas, engaged collaborators and skilled innovators who knows how to challenge the status quo. Amongst you, I know that we have specialists, generalists, magnificent creators, engaged collaborators, and skilled innovators. What is even better is that no matter your individual profile, you all know the big picture. You each know your own strength – think about how to put it to use, think about what role you want to take on and do not forget the big picture!

Following you on the masters programme I know that you are capable not only of entering the complex processes that make up the building industry but of taking on a leading role in them – of formulating ideas! I know that I speak for all of my colleagues when I say that we are proud of you and keen to see the spaces you will create and co-create in the future.

Promise yourself to stay critical and eager for knowledge – promise to make the difference that can bring an element of magic into our dwellings, our workplaces, hospitals, schools and urban spaces. It is vital and increasingly needed!

Finally, congratulations once again, I wish you an outrageous party tonight and all the best in the future!

 

//Marie Frier Hvejsel

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