Hyde Lecture with Jan Knikker

Hyde Lecture with Jan Knikker

By Kerry McCulloug...

October 31, 2022

Jan Knikker

The College of Architecture is pleased to announce Jan Knikker, strategy and development director for MVRDV, the internationally acclaimed design firm, will be giving the next Hyde lecture titled “What’s next? NEXT!” at 4 p.m., November 7, at Richards Hall, room 15.

For this lecture, Knikker will explore MVRDV’s practice of parametric design and innovative software that pushes the boundaries of what is possible. The remarkable – some even say radical architecture of the Dutch practice can often be seen as risky by clients. The in-house software studio, MVRDV New EXperimental Technologies (NEXT), helps the practice stay ahead of the curve making the firm’s projects an awe-inspiring reality. This leads to parametric designs that do not follow the established parametric aesthetic of other firms, but instead optimizes designs developed through other methods. Sometimes, work done by these technologists has been known to change pre-existing construction processes, making the designs possible in terms of feasibility, material cost and use of sustainable materials.

At a larger scale, this parametric design approach can be used in urban planning projects, leading to inclusive designs that combine high density with human values such as abundant day-light, intimacy and a smart street plan that avoids traffic.

Whether during design or construction, the right software allows architects and urbanists to realize the potential of their ideas. Software applications can even help to estimate the value that finished buildings add to the city. In short, software can now play a part in the entire lifecycle of an architectural work. MVRDV sees embracing information technology, not as a goal in itself, but as a tool towards other ambitions, making remarkable and even radical architecture a reality.

As a partner with MVRDV, Knikker leads the contracts, business development and public relations efforts, forming a fast and strategic studio that includes a strong visualization and sustainability team. Under his leadership and branding efforts, the practice has experienced a rapid expansion into new markets, focusing on solutions for global issues through its architecture and urbanism. He has worked on many publications and exhibitions, including the book MVRDV Buildings. Knikker regularly lectures internationally, at commercial and academic venues. He writes for various publications and was deputy editor of Domus 2019.

This presentation is part of the College of Architecture’s 2022-2023 Hyde Lecture Series featuring speakers from across disciplines that are united under the common theme of “Information Stimulus -New Paradigms in Planning and Design.” Now, more so than ever, the evolution in information technology is being driven by novel means of uncovering, transferring, and disseminating information. Advanced paradigms have emerged through the information drawn from other disciplines and the generation of innovative methods and tools and how they impact the professions of planning and design now and in the future.

The college’s Hyde Lecture Series is a long-standing, endowed, public program. Each year the college hosts compelling speakers in the fields of architecture, interior design, landscape architecture and planning that enrich the ongoing dialog around agendas which are paramount to the design disciplines and our graduates.