Organized by School of Architecture professor Rachel Dickey, Dense Emptiness is a symposium on the impacts of digital culture on design and architecture. Antoine Picon, the G. Ware Travelstead Professor of the History of Architecture and Technology and Director of Research at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, will deliver the keynote.
Dense Emptiness is an event of experiential exhibitions, compelling performances, and radical speakers intended to excite, challenge, and evoke discussion about the impacts of digital culture on design and architecture. The title represents the density of information in a society driven by metrics and data, and the great threat of emptiness, which occurs when all meaning is lost in the absence of the qualitative and the immeasurable. Similar to Reynar Banham’s plea for a serious approach to technology, Dense Emptiness calls for an exploration of the potential impacts on the built world, which result from our fixed relationship with technology. It questions if a day might come “when we turn off our target ads, navigational prompts, Tinder match notifications, and status updates to find a world stripped bare, where nothing is left but scaffolds and screens” (Young). The symposium is intended to provoke ideas which address the challenges imposed by today’s digital culture.