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Fay Jones School Hosts ‘500 Years and Counts’ During Hispanic Heritage Month

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Clockwise from top left: Benjamin Ibarra-Sevilla, Edna Ledesma, Juan Luis Burke, Gabriel Díaz Montemayor, James Rojas and Danielle Zoe Rivera.

In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month, the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design will host the “500 Years and Counting” online panel discussion from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 13, via Zoom.

The “500 Years and Over” roundtable will explore Hispanic heritage and agency in the built environment of the United States in the context of the year 2021 and the 500 years since the first European conquest of the American continent: the fall of Aztec Tenochtitlan to the Spaniards and their native allies.

Registration for the conversation is available on Zoom.

Several additional events are being held on the University of Alberta campus in honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from September 15 to October 15. Find more details on campus events on the University of A’s Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion website. .

Gabriel Díaz Montemayor, ASLA, is the Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and Associate Professor of Landscape Architecture at Fay Jones School. He hosted the October 13 event, inviting five panelists who are experts in Latin / Hispanic architectural, urban planning and landscape forms to participate.

“This year’s National Hispanic Heritage Month is special because it coincides with the 500th anniversary of the fall of Aztec Tenochtitlan – in 1521 and in what is now Mexico City – to the Spanish conquistadors and their native allies.” , said Díaz Montemayor. “Five centuries of a new culture in the making, both European and indigenous to the Americas. A new built environment, being a cultural environment, has been forming ever since. Add to this the imprint and the continuous transformation of the built environment by Hispanics in a different culture also expressed in the built environment, the Anglo-American. “

Díaz Montemayor said that according to the recently released 2020 U.S. Census results, Arkansas’ Hispanic population made up 8.5 percent of the state’s total population. In 2010, this same population represented 6.4% of the state’s total population. Over the past 10 years, Arkansas’ Hispanic population has grown by 38.1%. Nationally, the Hispanic population growth rate was 23% from 2010 to 2020.

“So in Arkansas, the presence of the Hispanic population is increasing at a rate close to double that of our country,” he said. “We see all of the profound, significant and beneficial impacts of the Hispanic population in our built environment – from the construction industry, the food industry, to restaurants, to urban art and to the revitalization of neighborhoods, Main streets and urban neighborhoods thanks to the demonstrated entrepreneurship of Hispanics, which is above the average American population. “

Nayelli Garcia, an architectural student and representative of the National Organization of Minority Architectural Students (NOMAS) chapter at Fay Jones School, will join Díaz Montemayor in moderating the October 13 conversation.

The panellists’ expertise includes historical colonial structures and the transfer of technology from Europe to the Americas, the history and theory of architecture and town planning in the Americas and their links to Europe, the cultural landscapes of immigrant populations with a focus on business and entrepreneurship, environmental justice and climate equity affecting low-income communities, and how Latinos are transforming public spaces, streets and the environment built.

“This round table includes a wide range of leading expertise in architecture – both contemporary and historical – in urban planning and landscapes, with an emphasis on social and environmental justice and participatory processes,” he said. he declares. “I certainly look forward to seeing the breadth and depth of our guests discussing the legacy and agency of Hispanics in the built environment of the United States.”

The panelists for this conversation are:

  • Benjamin Ibarra-Seville, Associate Professor of Architecture and Historic Preservation, Master of Advanced Studies Program Director and Masters of Science in Historic Preservation Program Coordinator at the School of Architecture at the University of Texas at Austin. He is an architect who graduated from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and holds a degree in conservation and restoration of built heritage from the program of excellence of the Carolina Foundation and the University of Alcalá de Henares, in Spain. Ibarra-Sevilla’s expertise involves case studies of ancient masonry techniques, stereotomy, descriptive geometry, and architectural geometry illuminated by form-resistant structures. His most recent research focuses on the transmission of building technology from Europe to the Americas, exploring the constructive and geometric analysis of 16th century rib vaults in Mexico. His work in masonry, geometry and stereotomy has received awards in Mexico and the United States and has been featured in various forums and journals in Europe, Latin America and North America. His most recent book, Mixtec stonecutting art, published by the National Autonomous University of Mexico, has received numerous awards, and its exhibition of the same name has been traveling for two years to eight cities in Mexico and the United States. He has participated in the development of aid to World Heritage cities such as Zanzibar in Tanzania, Baku in Azerbaijan and the Batanes Islands in the Philippines.
  • Edna Ledesma, Assistant Professor in the Department of Planning and Landscape Architecture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The body of his research, teaching and mentoring focuses on understanding the development of the smart, green and fair city of the 21st century, in particular the cultural landscapes of immigrant populations, micro-economies and their development of a new understanding of the town square. One of her recent publications is the book chapter “Shaping Success: Exploring the Evolution of Latino Business on US-Mexico Border States”, which is co-authored with Cristina Cruz and included in Advancing Latin American entrepreneurship: a new national economic imperative, edited by Marlene Orozco, Alfonso Morales, Michael J. Pisani and Jerry I. Porras (Purdue University Press).
  • Juan Luis Burke, assistant professor of architecture and architectural history and theory at the University of Maryland-College Park, where he teaches architectural studio and history and theory classes at the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation. Burke was originally trained as an architect with a specialization in the preservation of built heritage in his native Mexico. During the first part of his career, he collaborated in the preservation of important monuments in the city of Puebla de los Ángeles, Mexico. He has practiced architecture in Mexico, the United States, and Sweden, in projects that include historical preservation, museum design, school design and private residences. He completed his master’s and doctoral studies in the history and theory of architecture at McGill University, earning his doctorate. in 2017. His academic interests revolve around the history and theory of architecture and town planning from early modern times to modern periods in Mexico and Latin America, as well as his links with Europe , in particular Spain and Italy. He has published a number of articles, articles and chapters edited in Spanish and English, dealing with questions of the reception of architectural and urban theory in Viceregal Mexico. He is the author of a book on the history of architecture and urban history of Puebla during the viceroyal period, Architecture and town planning in Viceregal Mexico: Puebla de los Ángeles, 16th-18th centuries (Routledge, 2021).
  • Danielle Zoe Rivera, Assistant Professor in the Landscape Architecture + Environmental Planning Department at the University of California at Berkeley. Rivera leads the Just Environments Lab, which seeks to center social justice and equity concerns in discussions about the future of our environment. His work focuses on environmental planning, urban design and community development. Within these spaces, she focuses on issues of environmental justice and climate equity affecting low-income communities. His current work draws on community-based research and design methods to identify and address environmental injustices affecting low-income communities in South Texas, the Bay Area, and Puerto Rico. She has conducted previous research in Southeast Michigan, the Philadelphia area, and the Denver area. She holds a doctorate in urban planning from the University of Michigan, a master’s degree in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania, and a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Pennsylvania State University.
  • James rojas, who for 30 years has observed, researched and documented the ways Latinos are transforming the streets to meet their non-motorized mobility needs. He has become one of the few nationally recognized experts on this subject and has written and lectured extensively on how culture and immigration are transforming the spatial mobility patterns of Americans. He is the founder of the Latino Urban Forum, an advocacy group dedicated to raising awareness of the planning and design issues facing low-income Latinos. Rojas has lectured and facilitated workshops at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University, Cornell University, and the University of California at Berkeley, as well as other schools and public forums. His lectures help Latinos clear any doubts they have about city planning or transportation.


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Rodney N.

The author Rodney N.