Biannual Reunion of the Richard Morris Hunt Prize Fellows and Scholars
October 16-21, 2018
The Richard Morris Hunt Prize (RMHP) Fellows and Scholars chose New Orleans for their bi-annual reunion, in celebration of the three-hundredth anniversary of the founding of the city. Wendy Hillis, Tulane University Architect and 2007 RMHP Fellow, along with Beth Jacobs, 2017 RMHP Fellow, organized the program in this most French of American cities.
We were to experience this city of sunshine, flowers, scents, so well epitomized by Louis Armstrong’s tune, “C’est si bon”. NOLA (for New Orleans, Louisiana) is encircled by the Mississippi River, “le Père des Eaux”, often invisible, always immense, the Lord of the whole province, the Minotaur seducer and destroyer. Yet, after the devastation of Katrina in 2005, this town seems to have turned the page.
Sabrina Fabris, 2002 RMHP Fellow, opened the magnificent five-day event. Jumping from century to century, she fascinated an audience gathered at the AIA Architects Centre describing the rebirth of the gardens of the Chateau de Chambord. Thanks to archived drawings of the never-completed garden, a team from the Philippe Villeneuve Agency, of which Sabrina was project manager, have brought them to life. They are now offer enchanting views. Fabris tells us, “What an honor to have been chosen as project manager by Philippe Villeneuve ACMH to supervise the re-naissance of this prestigious garden, especially when all eyes are focused on this year’s celebrations of Chambord 500th anniversary. This spectacular project was made possible by a donation given by the American philanthropist Stephen Schwarzman. Much like my research in America during my Richard Morris Hunt Prize Fellowship for a, this is another example of the close cultural relationship between our two countries.” → Follow this link to view the presentation
We needed to learn more about the Mississippi and its impressive estuary. Richard Campanella, Senior Professor of Practice in Architecture and Geography at Tulane University, enlightened us with a masterful description of the regulation of water, flow, run-off, retention lakes, and canals associated with the river… So many discoveries, so many anxiety-provoking questions. Continue reading