Public thankings

Today, I handed in the final version of my thesis. At the front, I wanted to thank some people. But since I don't want anyone to ever read my thesis, I am posting my thank-yous here.

Research continually passes one through the eyes of needles. Coming to the Yale School of Architecture marked a major climactic change for me. Before I came, I knew little about architecture after World War II; for that matter, I did not know who Cedric Price was. And even that was too large a field of inquiry: in the course of the last two years, I kept narrowing, from mobility, to responsiveness, to Cedric Price, to Generator, and that one project might have taken eleven different directions.

And so, gratitude is in hearty order.

This thesis project could not have been realized without Anne-Marie Ségouin at the Canadian Centre for Architecture, or the generosity of Barbara Jakobson, John Frazer and Nic Bailey. I appreciated your stories and being drawn into the web of Cedric Price. Listening to you talk about your love and respect for him, standing up to my elbows in sketches, I've come to know him.

My parents, stepparents and brothers were supportive of the crazy move of turning down a management job at Yahoo and going back to school. Mom, Dad, Chuck, Carol, Andy and Ben, you know it's made me happier than I've ever been. My friends from before and during, you nudged me this direction and kept me going. Major hats off to Jenn, Ali, Maggie, Anne, Adam, Mocha, Bryan, Judith, Nathan, Mike, Liz, Abhishek, Derek, Jay, Andrew, John, Andy, Heather, and Vicky (and I'm sure I'm forgetting others); the fabulous 30-something female contingent and class of 2008 women, the students in Critical Imaginaries and Smart Materials, the Wooster Square gang, the people in and around John Blood's 2005 summer drawing class. And dicke Küsse for my long, lost German host sister, Birke, who just finished a thesis of her own. Du bist mir Lieb.

I thrashed around in my attempt to find the right project in a surely frustrating incidence. I owe the faculty the kindest of thanks for their patience, in particular: Emmanuel Petit's advisory mana and caffeinated meetings, Keller Easterling's prescience (and for turning me onto both Cedric Price and Generator!), Eeva-Liisa Pelkonen's sweet powers of focus, Peggy Deamer's life lesson that one should always state what's at stake, Dolores Hayden's support in my personal sea change, Henry Sussman's wander through Walter Benjamin's Arcades and Kant's systems, Claire Zimmerman's mentorship and friendship, and Dean Robert A.M. Stern for the guidance in all of my class's endeavors. Richard (Starbuck), Marilyn, Maria and Donna smoothed the journey with deftness and humor.

The MED (Master of Environmental Design) cohort is an outstanding, collegial bunch that I will treasure for years to come. Ghosts of MED future Zachary White, Kate John-Alder, Elizabeth Bishop, and Alan Brake freely shared their knowledge and support; ghosts of MED past, Sara Stevens, Joy Knoblauch, Frida Rosenberg, and Leslie Ryan, offered friendship and keen minesweeping capabilities.

Fellow ghosts of MED present, my deepest gratitude goes to you: Britt Eversole, McLain Clutter, Federica Vannucchi and Enrique Ramirez, for the conversations, schemes, arguments, collaborations and swooping around when I might've collapsed. You taught me so much and then some.

And Enrique—all of this might've happened without you but wouldn't have been nearly as interesting. Thank you for your love. This is for you.

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2 Replies to “Public thankings”

  1. Congratulations! I know you don't think you want people to read it, but I really suggest you put the whole thing online. Paper copies of my MA thesis are sitting uselessly on my bookshelf and in the University of Texas library, but I still (ten years later, gulp!) get people occasionally contacting me about it, and two or three people at least definitely cited it in other places because they found it online.

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