OfficeUS Agenda

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Author name: 
Ashley Schafer (Editor) with Eva Franch I Gilabert (Editor), Amanda Reeser Lawrence (Editor), Ana Miljacki (Editor)
Affiliation: 
Alumni
School: 
Architecture, Planning, & Preservation
Class Year: 
1998
Genre: 
Non-fiction
Subject: 
Reference

The OfficeUS Agenda, the catalogue for the U.S. Pavilion, serves simultaneously as a guide and counterpoint to the exhibition. Organized into stories of expertise, exchange, and export, the Agenda frames the narratives that have projected the organizational structures and branded identity of U.S. architecture firms internationally from 1914–2014. The Agenda includes thirteen essays of original scholarship, including Barry Bergdoll, Beatriz Colomina, Jorge Otero-Pailos and Keller Easterling. OfficeUS, the U.S. Pavilion for the 2014 International Architecture Exhibition – la Biennale di Venezia, reframes the history of U.S. architecture through the lens of export in two interrelated constructs: "The Office" and "The Repository". The Repository presents 1000 projects designed by 200 US offices working abroad in a chronological archive of the last 100 years. Collectively these projects tell multiple, imbricated stories of U.S. firms, typologies, and technologies, as well as a broader narrative of modernization and its global reach. The Office engages these projects, revisiting their premises and conclusions over the course of the Biennale. It functions as a laboratory staffed by a diverse group of resident design partners collaborating with outpost offices and a rotating cast of visiting experts. Together, these two halves of OfficeUS create both an historical record of the U.S. contribution to global architectural thought, and a petri dish in which that record is submitted to contemporary agents of disruption and critique.