Unfolding Perspectives in Preservation: a panel discussion
Saturday, February 11, 2:00PM | Alumni Memorial Hall, Randolph Hall, 66 George Street
Unfolding Perspectives in Preservation: a panel discussion
Saturday, February 11, 2:00PM
Alumni Memorial Hall, in historic Randolph Hall at the College of Charleston
66 George Street
Free and open to the public
Whitney Powers, Charleston-based architect
Ray Huff, Charleston-based architect and director of Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston
David Brussat, architecture critic and journalist based in Providence, RI
Robin Williams, Chair of Architectural History at Savannah College of Art and Design
R. Grant Gilmore, Associate Professor and Addlestone Chair in Historic Preservation, College of Charleston
Nathaniel Walker, Assistant Professor of Architectural History, College of Charleston
The Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art and the Historic Preservation and Community Planning program at the College of Charleston are glad to host a public roundtable discussion dedicated to new thinking on the topic of old architecture. Held in conjunction with the Halsey Institute exhibition on the meticulously detailed architectural drawings and fabrications by Charleston native Ronald Ramsey, this roundtable is designed to highlight and debate emerging issues in preservation that are often ignored or poorly understood, even in Charleston. From learning to how to see threatened elements of urban memory such as street pavements and small outbuildings, to the awkward topic of preserving modernist structures that have failed to earn public affection, we seek to expand debates on preservation into arenas illuminated by the art of Ronald Ramsey and by the work of our four guest speakers. The latter will include Robin Williams, a Savannah College of Art and Design professor of architectural history who studies neglected urban details; Ray Huff, noted modernist designer and director of the Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston; David Brussat, a journalist, critic, popular blogger and advocate of new classical architecture from Providence, Rhode Island; and Whitney Powers, an architect specializing in the adaptation of both old buildings and new design philosophies to serve contemporary Charleston.
This program is co-sponsored by the Historic Preservation and Community Planning Program at the College of Charleston.
View the panel discussion
As the panelists refer to slides, the below gallery contains them in order in which they’re seen.
About the panelists
Whitney Powers, President of Studio A, was the full-time resident faculty for the Clemson Architecture Center at Charleston during its first full academic year, 1988-89, a position that brought her to the region. Her practice of architecture soon followed with early work in the area gaining her recognition as one of the nation’s Forty Under Forty per NYC’s Municipal Art Society, and in the Young Architects edition of Progressive Architecture. A graduate of Mississippi State University’s School of Architecture and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, she has also held visiting appointments on the faculty at the University of Cincinnati and North Carolina State University. A strong advocate for community, Powers’ service includes the city’s Board of Architectural Review, SC Community Loan Fund board of directors, Charleston Moves board of directors, and co-founder of the If You Were Mayor® website.
Ray Huff has successfully combined the academy and practice to engage questions of architecture and design. This symbiotic relationship has been critical to his work and study for over forty years. Prior to founding the international design practice, Huff+Gooden Architects with partner Mario Gooden, he founded the Clemson Architecture Center in Charleston (CAC.C) where he continues to serve as director. His professional experience include a mentorship with noted Florida architect Donald Singer. In 1974 he established the design practice Synergy Architects in Clemson, South Carolina where he won numerous design awards and taught design studio at Clemson University before relocating to Charleston. Most recently, he received the Clemson Architecture Alumni Achievement Award and named as a member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects.
In addition to teaching at the CAC.C, Mr. Huff held the distinguished Bishop Chair at Yale University’s Graduate School of Architecture and has lectured at numerous educational institutions, professional societies, and elsewhere. He has also been a keynote speaker at AIA conventions in Minneapolis, San Juan, Nashville, and elsewhere. He also chaired and was the keynote speaker for the design symposium at Brandenburg University of Technology Cottbus, Germany hosted by the German Theorists Cloud-Cuckoo-Land.
David Brussat is the director of the Architecture Here and There blog, where he champions the classical revival at the expense of modern architecture. For a quarter of a century he did the same as the weekly architecture critic for the Providence Journal. Since his departure from that paper in 2014, he has written and edited for clients, and has just written his first book, about architecture and change, called Lost Providence, due out this spring from The History Press. In 2002, he won an Arthur Ross Award for his architectural writing from the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, and he has been on the board of its New England chapter since 2007. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, based in London. David was born in Chicago, grew up in the District of Columbia, and has resided in Providence since 1984. He lives with his family on the city’s East Side.
Robin B. Williams is chair of the Department of Architectural History at the Savannah College of Art and Design. His PhD studies at the University of Pennsylvania examined the transformation of Rome into the capital of modern Italy during the late nineteenth century. Since joining SCAD in 1993, Williams has made Savannah the focus of his research. From 1997 to 2006, he directed the online Virtual Historic Savannah Project, and is the lead author of a new architectural guidebook, Buildings of Savannah, the inaugural city guide in the Society of Architectural Historians’ Buildings of the United States series. His recent journal article on the role of historic street pavement in modernizing Savannah is indicative of his passion for studying neglected elements of historic cities, which are often erased without much thought.