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Randal Vaughn Joins APLA as New Visiting Faculty

Randal Vaughn

Randal Vaughan has joined the Auburn architectural faculty to teach a fifth year thesis design and research studio. Study is focused on developing the theoretical as well as practical content of this final year of student work. The course requires a stated thesis explored in written research and supported through architectural design.

Thesis topics include Jack McWaters’ “Opposition between Presence and Absence”, which interprets absence as emptiness and looks toward Louis Kahn’s Kimbell Art Museum as an inspiration and example, and Emily Walker’s “Finding Dignity through Architecture” where she ponders the plight of mother and child homelessness and the role architecture plays in providing security through simple shelter. It also explores architecture’s position in the city as a tool for the elimination of the mother’s isolation from a community and asserts the church and spirituality as keys to involvement. Andrew Kern’s thesis asks the question “ why does our vernacular public architecture not realize the ideals of liberty and equality…?” and details the movement from distraction to action as the opening up of the public realm. The topic comes to bear in a project for a new city hall located at one of the most understated but politically charged urban intersections in Alabama; Montgomery’s Court Square.

All students share the city of Montgomery as their site and work toward an understanding of its current and historical, physical, social, and political conditions. Students have visited the city and met with city planners to hear firsthand of local needs and concerns. Rich in possibilities, the city reveals itself as a city open to urban invigoration. Students are challenged to envision the possibilities of Montgomery as a 21st century city growing out of its historical condition along with kimbelthe student’s thesis statement. Final work will be presented in April with the intent of offering concrete proposals and fostering further conversation about work in Montgomery.