An Urban Code in Traditional Middle Eastern Contexts by Gamal Mohammed

Wednesday, January 30, 2019 - 8:00am

An Urban Code in Traditional Middle Eastern Contexts: The Edge Environment as a Central Theme for Reading the Social Pattern Language of Historic Sites            

This article discusses a new concept that may help professionals and specialists read the “urban code” of Middle Eastern traditional contexts that was developed from the mix of social aspect and spatial morphology, illustrating how these elements are interconnected in a way that highlights the values and qualities and their reflections on the physicality of the city. This urban code envisions and analyses the relevance of the social pattern language of the traditional context to its urban manifestation, leaning on the “edge environment” as a new generative concept. It outlines the relationship between the ideologies buried underneath the walls of the spatial form of traditional built environment such as Cairo and sheds light on those ideologies in a way that helps us read them within the context of modern values pertained to the sense of community. The notion of the edge environment may contribute to design education restoration, preservation, and upgrading processes as design toolkit that employs careful interventions by fine-tuning the edge environment.                                    

Here is a link to the paper: ).


Register now for Ontario Climate symposium

Logo for symposium with trees and circles
Monday, September 17, 2018

OCAD University is hosting the 2018 Ontario Climate Change Consortium symposium on October 11 and 12. The symposium will explore how the development of positive, innovative, interdisciplinary visions can facilitate a transformative cultural shift toward low-carbon communities, sustainable adaptation and the adoption of green infrastructure and design in cities.

The two-day event is open to all, with students receiving a discounted rate. Come participate in a wide range of activities including a neighbourhood tour, short films, interactive presentations, a guided tour of the AGO’s Anthropocene exhibition, workshops and other activities. OCAD U Associate Professors Selmin Kara and Alia Weston are among faculty speaking or leading workshops.

Programming aims to foster a collective discussion on urban landscapes and highlight the interconnection of policy, public health, urban planning, climate change adaptation and mitigation and urban growth.

Register online for this exciting and informative event.

Established in 2011, the OCC works collaboratively with university researchers and partners from the public, private and NGO sectors on projects aimed at answering specific questions related to climate change and creating the intelligence necessary to address climate risk. Its formal mission: To arm decision makers with “regionally-specific climate data, intelligence and adaptation services that enable effective policy and investment responses to climate uncertainty in Ontario.”


OCAD U Welcomes Rooftop Beehives

A square beehive with bees buzzing nearby
Beekeeper wearing a net visits hives
Honey in jars
Thursday, June 21, 2018

OCAD U is ushering in Summer Solstice! Alveole is an urban beekeeping team working with OCAD U and our building co-owner, Hullmark, to bring beehives to the rooftop of 205 Richmond St. W.
Come October 2018, OCAD U will have our very own neighbourhood honey!

Stay tuned for workshops this summer and fall to learn about urban beekeeping and the wonders of pollinating your neighbourhood!

Why urban bees?

Urban beekeeping creates alternatives: local honey, garden pollination throughout the city, and overall perennial greening.
The world population of bees is in dramatic decline, what with climate change, widespread use of pesticides, habitat loss and new diseases and parasites.
The phenomenon is alarming because bees play a major role in fruit, vegetable and nut production: about a third of what we eat relies on their pollination.
But cities, contrary to what we may believe, are truly the best place for bees: there are strict anti-pesticide laws, untapped floral diversity and largely unused rooftop space.

In Canada, 75% of honey comes from elsewhere. There is no say on whether it is blended, cut with corn syrup, or GMO. For the sake of quality and transparency, it would be ideal for consumers and sellers alike if we could rely more heavily on local honey.



Passed in the Stuck

Passed in the stuck
Saturday, July 19, 2008 - 4:00am to Sunday, August 10, 2008 - 4:00am

While in Europe, OCAD alumna Tanya Cunnington began to examine the roles of the artist, both past and present, and realized that she felt extremely drawn to the past. She began to paint cityscapes as a means to express her strong interest in certain cities as they related to art history.

Passed in the Stuck is comprised of mixed media collages which the artist sees as symbolic of these pasts. They are urban landscapes broken down into pure visual abstraction.

Venue & Address: 
Loop Gallery 1174 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario

Enid Robbie - In Praise of Cities

Enid Robbie
Saturday, December 1, 2007 - 5:00am to Sunday, March 2, 2008 - 5:00am

City of Toronto Culture, through its Market Gallery program, presents:
"In Praise of Cities by Enid Robbie"
from December 1, 2007 to March 2, 2008.
This exhibit provides the viewpoint of a committed urban artist and is the first retrospective of Enid Robbie's work from 1952 to 1987.

Venue & Address: 
The Market Gallery, South St. Lawrence Market 95 Front Street East, Toronto, Ontario

Rephotographing Marville's Paris: A Study of Urban Change

Before and after pictures of Paris Streets
Monday, September 22, 2014 - 4:30pm

Peter Sramek, Chair of Cross-Disciplinary Art Practices

Illustrated lecture

Urban change is inevitable, as is our ambivalence towards modernization and the possible loss of heritage which accompanies it. During the second half of the nineteenth-century, Paris was re-imagined and a structure of wide boulevards constructed to crisscross the network of older streets. It was Charles Marville's task to document in photographs what Georges Haussmann slated for demolition. In this illustrated lecture, photographer Peter Sramek discusses his process of revisiting Marville's sites to record the changes of the past 150 years and to speak with today's Parisians about how the city continues to change in some of its oldest neighborhoods. 

The exhibition Charles Marville Photographer of Paris, is on view at The Metropolitan Museum of Art from January 27 to May 4.

Peter Sramek studied photography at MIT under Minor White and has taught at the Ontario College of Art & Design University in Toronto since 1976 where he is currently Chair of Cross-Disciplinary Art Practices.

Sramek’s work incorporates silver photography, digital imaging, handmade books and video installation. His works are in many collections, notably the Musée Carnavalet (Paris), Toronto Archives, Art Gallery of Hamilton, National Library of Canada, the Allan Chasanoff Collection (NY) and MOMA (NY). Exhibitions of his rephotographic projects include the French Institute of Prague and Gallery 345 (Toronto). Recent group exhibitions include the Korean Cultural Centre, Beijing and the New Delhi Art Fair.

Sramek's black and white silver photography currently explores European historical sites incorporating rephotographic strategies, working from historical archives. Piercing Time: Paris after Marville and Atget 1865-2012 is based primarily on the Marville collection at the Musée Carnavalet and has been supported by a Google Research Award, as well as funding under the GRAND National Centres of Excellence Research Network (Graphics Animation and New Media). A book of this title has been released by Intellect Books/University of Chicago Press.

Photo: Charles Marville's view of Rue Tirechappe from 1865 (left), which was replaced by Rue du Pont Neuf as seen in Peter Sramek's photograph taken from the same spot in 2009.

Venue & Address: 
La Maison Française New York University 16 Washington Mews New York, New York