Irina Chernyakova

Irina Chernyakova manages communications, including book and journal publications, and public programs at the MIT Department of Architecture, from which she graduated with a master's degree in the history, theory, and criticism of architecture and art.

  • Architecture and Action

    J. Meejin Yoon and Irina Chernyakova

    Projects and texts that address architecture's role in taking on complex global challenges including climate change, housing, migration, and social justice.

    What is the role of architecture and design in addressing complex global challenges? How does one define “action” in terms of architectural scholarship and practice? How is architecture at MIT uniquely positioned to lead? Architecture education at MIT, celebrating its 150th anniversary, today encompasses research and teaching projects that address large—and sometimes highly charged—topics, including urban resilience in the face of climate change, energy use and futures, refugees fleeing conflict or disaster, water management, infrastructure, the teaching of global architectural history, and explorations into the self-assembly of materials. Architecture and Action focuses on the agency of architects and architecture within the overlapping spheres of the institution, the discipline, and the profession. Through a presentation of projects and texts, the book reveals how students and faculty—whether architects, artists, historians, technologists, or scientists—define action, considering its possible forms, procedures, and scales, as well as its potency and limits. The selected work exemplifies the wide range of approaches and zones of intervention, bringing together projects that find space for action while questioning assumptions about where architectural value is located. Whether advocating for utopian idealism, systemic overhaul, instrumental tools, or pragmatic arguments, all of the work collected here presents a powerful case for architecture's embrace of agency and action.

    Contributors Azra Aksamija, Brandon Clifford, Rania Ghosn, Mark Jarzombek, Caroline Jones, Sheila Kennedy, Miho Mazereeuw, Ana Miljacki, Nasser Rabbat, Christoph Reinhart, Rafi Segal, Skylar Tibbits

    The Agendas in Architecture series features student and faculty design, research, and scholarship from the MIT Department of Architecture.

    • Paperback $35.00


  • A Second Modernism

    A Second Modernism

    MIT, Architecture, and the 'Techno-Social' Moment

    Arindam Dutta

    An account of architecture's postwar ambition to transform itself into a research-oriented and technologically complex discipline of design expertise.

    After World War II, a second modernism emerged in architecture—an attempt, in architectural scholar Joan Ockman's words, “to transform architecture from a 'soft' aesthetic discipline into a 'hard,' objectively verifiable field of design expertise.” Architectural thought was influenced by linguistic, behavioral, computational, mediatic, cybernetic, and other urban and behavioral models, as well as systems-based and artificial intelligence theories. This nearly 1,000-page book examines the “techno-social” turn in architecture, taking MIT's School of Architecture and Planning as its exemplar.

    In essays and interviews, prominent architectural historians and educators examine the postwar “research-industrial” complex, its attendant cult of expertise, and its influence on life and letters both in America and abroad. Paying particular attention to the ways that technological thought affected the culture of the humanities, the social sciences, and architectural design, the book traces this shift toward complexity as it unfolded, from classroom practices to committee deliberations, from the challenges of research to the vicissitudes of funding. Looking closely at the ways that funded research drew academics towards a “problem-solving” and relevance-seeking mentality and away from the imported Bauhaus model of intuition and aesthetics, the book reveals how linguistics, information sciences, operations research, computer technology, and systems theory became part of architecture's expanded toolkit.

    This is a history not just of a school of architecture but of the research-oriented era itself. It offers a thoroughgoing exploration of the ways that policies, politics, and pedagogy transformed themselves in accord with the exponential growth of institutional power.

    • Hardcover $69.95