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Keynote Speakers

The BTES Conference 2011
Ryerson University | University of Waterloo

August 4 - 7, 2011
Toronto, Ontario, Canada



Colin Ripley, Ryerson University

Ryerson University

"Homo Ludens"

In 1993, Vilem Flusser argued that the rapid development of computer technologies had already led to the development of a new type of human being: Homo Ludens, man the player, characterized by the importance of fingertips playing across keyboards replaces Homo Faber, man the maker, defined for millennia by his ability to grasp and manipulate with the hand. The arrival of this new species has profound implications for the further development of all human technologies, including architecture. How can the institutional DNA of architecture – the profession, the practices, and the schools, all products of a soon to be extinct culture – adapt to this new reality?

Colin Ripley

Colin Ripley
B.Eng., M.Sc., M.Arch., OAA, MRAIC

Colin Ripley is an Associate Professor in the Department of Architectural Science at Ryerson University, and Graduate Program Director for Ryerson's Master of Architecture. He is also a director of RVTR (, which operates as a bridge between academic research practices and professional practices in architecture. RVTR has been extensively published and the winner of a number of major awards, including the 2009 Professional Prix de Rome in Architecture. Colin Ripley holds a Bachelor of Engineering from McMaster University, a Master of Science in theoretical physics from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Architecture from Princeton University.



Ed Allen and Joe Iano

Ed Allen was an important part of the first BTES Conference in Maryland in 2006. He and his partner Joe Iano will be making a workshop presentation to kick off the Saturday morning of the conference. More information to follow!


Philip Beesley, University of Waterloo

Waterloo Architecture

"Liminal Responsive Architecture"

'Sargasso Field' from COP15, in collaboration with CITA, Copenhagen, 2009, photo: Phllip Beesley

Might architecture live? Might it feel, and care? Experimental architect and sculptor Philip Beesley will explore possibilities for a new generation of responsive architecture, illustrating a series of project including emerging work for the Hylozoic series, recently featured at the 2010 Venice Biennale for Architecture. Leading engineers, scientists and computational researchers are contributing to this interdisciplinary series. These collaborative works are immersive, interactive environments fitted with arrays of sensors and kinetic devices, interwoven with next-generation chemistry. Arrays of touch sensors and shape memory alloy actuators create waves of diffusive breathing motion, luring visitors into the shimmering depths of a forest of light. Images from the recent Sargasso installation in Brookfield Place for Luminato can be viewed here.

Philip Beesley Philip Beesley MRAIC OAA (Professor Waterloo Architecture; Examiner University College London) is an architect developing responsive kinetic architectural environments that approach near-living functions. His work is widely cited as a pioneer in the rapidly expanding technology of responsive architectural environments. He has authored and edited eight books, three international proceedings and a number of catalogues, and appears on the cover of Artificial Life (MIT), LEONARDO and AD journals. He has been responsible for some 100 architectural projects. He was selected to represent Canada for the 2010 Venice Biennale for Architecture, and has received worldwide press including WIRED, TEDx, Discovery Channel, Casa Vogue features. Distinctions include Prix de Rome in Architecture (Canada), VIDA 11.0, FEIDAD.



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