Caroline O'Donnell: Niche Tactics Book Launch

Niche Tactics: Generative Relationships between Architecture and Site

Niche Tactics: Generative Relationships between Architecture and Site (Routledge, 2015).

Niche Tactics: Generative Relationships between Architecture and Site (Routledge, 2015), the first book by architecture's Edgar A. Tafel Assistant Professor Caroline O'Donnell, explores architecture's relationship with site and its ecological analogue: the relationship between an organism and its environment.

The language of evolution has been creeping into architecture — words like species, brood, and mutation have become commonplace. But there is one aspect that is often left behind: site. This book goes back to the basics of evolution theory and considers how we might think and design differently if we no longer neglect the role of the environment in the translation from evolution to architecture. Niche Tactics provides a series of case studies that investigate historical moments when relationships between architecture and site were productively intertwined, but also zooms out to look at the role of context in ecology, film, language, jokes, and teratology.

O'Donnell is the director of the professional Master of Architecture program in the Department of Architecture, the faculty editor of the Cornell Journal of Architecture, and principal of the design studio CODA.

The launch event on Monday, September 28 at 5 p.m. will replicate the order of the book itself, with experts responding to particular chapters: Catherine Ingraham will represent the self-authored "Introduction"; Greg Keeffe will respond to chapter 1, "Niche Tactics"; Val Warke will respond to chapter 6, "All Dressed Up"; Mark Morris will respond to chapter 9, "Duck Jokes"; and O'Donnell will conclude with the CODA. In addition, an array of mixed meats and eggs will represent chapter 11 "Hopeful Monsters."

Niche Tactics will be for sale and the author will be available for signing after the event.

This event is cosponsored by the Fine Arts Library, part of Cornell University Library's Chats in the Stacks series, and the College of AAP.