Five College Assistant Professor of Sustainable Architecture
Naomi Darling, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, is a principal at Naomi Darling Architecture, a full-service architectural practice based in Amherst, MA and New Haven, CT. The firm aims to produce socially responsible and environmentally conscious projects at all scales in terms of size, time, and permanence with a special consideration of site and place. Current projects include a park in Old Saybrook, CT, a farmhouse expansion and renovation in Simsbury CT, and a Memorial Hall and Community Center in honor of Inazo Nitobe, in Sapporo, Japan.
Darling was one of 20 participants showcased in EP:2011, the second annual exhibition of work, art, and designs of emerging architects across North America sponsored by The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Center for Emerging Professionals. Her project, Kernan Tea House, was awarded an AIA New England Regional Award in 2013. Prior to founding her practice, Darling worked at Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects, Studio ABK, and Kengo Kuma and Associates.
Darling’s early experiences working as a researcher studying climate change in Antarctica and as a scientist aboard the SSV Westward were formative experiences that have helped shape her teaching and practice today.
Spring semester of this yearlong course will be a project-based semester with students working in collaborative interdisciplinary teams (with the fall course as a prerequisite) to develop research-based design proposals across multiple scales. The projects will include developing a land use plan / master plan, developing building designs that seem most relevant to the local people, and possibly developing smaller-scale design projects as needed - all of these projects will be informed by and integrate research related to the cultural, social, and/or ecological issues from Nan Province, Thailand. At the end of the semester, each project team will produce a series of drawings as well as a project research paper that presents the design projects within the context of the research questions most pressing to each team. It is expected that students will represent their disciplines of study as "experts" within each team and that teams will share information and research. Class time will be spent discussing the larger contexts of the projects with both student and faculty presentations and in-studio working sessions with critiques, pin-ups and reviews of the design proposals and reports.