Todays architecture students will build a world in which integrating societal and technological needs, affordability, and energy efficiency will be paramount.
By Jodi Ackerman
When Ted Krueger finished graduate school 20 years ago, he quickly assumed the traditional role of professional architect, working for firms in New York City on projects that at the time included some of the biggest urban developments in the world.
After hours Krueger pursued his real passion constructing architectural experimentation.
To pursue his work, Krueger, who today is associate professor of architecture at Rensselaer, co-founded an alternative independent practice called K/K Research and Development. In a lab in Manhattan, he and his collaborator, Ken Kaplan, built interactive electronically controlled machines and structures. One, a 28-foot-long and 4-foot-wide airplane wing-like structure, was suspended between two cliffs at Artpark arts center near Niagara Falls.
It tracked an individuals movement, responding with 13 automotive antennas, lights, and sounds. His futuristic machine-like artworks, exhibited across the United States and Europe in the 1980s, generated debate around the world on the future of our day-to-day environment.
Clearly, I dont do things that are limited to the design of buildings, which some would say defines what architecture is supposed to be, says Krueger, who joined the faculty in 2001. What Im interested in, as an architect, is the relationship between individuals and the environments they inhabit, which is increasingly becoming the person in relation to technology. This is what makes Rensselaer a particularly interesting place to teach, learn, and to expand inquiry about the future of architecture.
Krueger is one of a growing number of faculty in Rensselaers School of Architecture who are probing todays technology outside their field to find what new dimensions can be added to enhance the practice and teaching of architecture, and are looking forward to what tomorrows technology will have to offer.