OCAD University

Ecology.Design.Synergy speaker series continues

with Manfred Brausem and Martin Liefhebber

Green Architecture & New Ideas from Germany & Canada presented by Goethe-Institut Toronto and OCADU

(Toronto — November 18, 2010) The Faculty of Design at OCAD University (OCADU) in partnership with Goethe-Institut Toronto presents the second talk in a speaker series as part of Ecology.Design.Synergy: Green Architecture & New Ideas from Germany & Canada. Strategic Construction: The Architect as Agent for Change brings together German architect Manfred Brausem in conversation with Canadian architect Martin Liefhebber for a free event on Friday, November 26 at 6 p.m. in OCADU’s Auditorium.

The series launched in October with Provocative Visioning: The Artist/Designer as Eco-Provocateur, showcasing the remarkable creative explorations of Berlin-based Friedrich von Borries and Canadian Philip Beesley.

Curated by OCADU Faculty of Design Acting Dean Doreen Balabanoff in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Toronto, this series explores a range of architectural and design practices that are transforming our understanding of ‘sustainability’ within the built environment. This evening showcases two pioneers in passive solar design: Manfred Brausem is embraced as a ‘guiding spirit’ by innovative architectural firms in the US; Martin Liefhebber’s vision extends beyond creating healthy homes to building healthy communities.

About the Speakers:
Manfred Brausem is an accomplished Passive House architect based in Cologne. He has been a pioneer of the Passive House movement since its introduction in Germany 15 years ago. He has realized over 100 passive solar projects, and is one of the most experienced professionals worldwide in the field. The Passive House Standard is hugely successful in Europe. Manfred’s work was instrumental in popularizing it across Europe. In 2015 this energy standard, with an amazing 90 percent reduction in energy use, will become part of the building code in Germany and is being promoted by the European Union for adoption by their member states as part of their commitment to curb climate change.

Martin Liefhebber is one of Canada’s original “bioneers” — using unorthodox materials including straw bale in urban settings and used tires in “earthships” — gaining recognition in 1991 for the award-winning off-grid “Healthy Home”, commissioned by the Canadian Mortgage & Housing Association. Throughout his career, and as principle in his firm (which has grown from Liefhebber Architects to Breathe Architects), Liefhebber has demonstrated his belief that “architecture is something that actually fixes the environment.” This approach is evident in both the Clarkson house, designed for exceptional indoor air quality, and the “MC2” house designed to address affordability, ageing and ambient resource use, and absorbing and circulating sunlight, air and water in a hybrid power system. Liefhebber teaches in OCAD University’s Environmental Design program.

Additional Ecology.Design.Synergy speaker events will include:

Visionary Regeneration: The Historic Fabric Refashioned
Speakers & Date TBA

Fine Tuning: The Building as Ecosystem
Speakers & Date TBA

About the Goethe-Institut Toronto
The Goethe-Institut Toronto (www.goethe.de/toronto) presents important positions, contemporary ideas and arts practices from Germany and Europe to Canadians. Our current focus themes are Culture & Economy, City & Climate, and German film & media art. We organise residencies together with our Canadian partners, offer international liaison work and consulting as well as promote European cultural understanding, e.g. through our cooperation with other European cultural institutes across Canada.

About OCAD University (OCADU)
OCAD University (www.ocad.ca) is Canada’s “University of the Imagination.” The University, founded in 1876, is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines. OCAD University is building on its traditional, studio-based strengths, adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinary practice, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies. In the Age of Imagination, OCAD University community members will be uniquely qualified to act as catalysts for the next advances in culture, technology and quality of life for all Canadians.

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For more information contact:

Jutta Brendemühl, Program Coordinator, Goethe-Institut Toronto
416.593.5257 Ext. 205

Sarah Mulholland, Media & Communications Officer
416.977.6000 Ext. 327 (mobile Ext. 1327)

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