ICA Philadelphia

Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Pennsylvania | 118 South 36th Street
PA-19104 Philadelphia

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Opening Reception: Friday, September 8, 6-8pm

Laurie Olin and Peter Eisenman have designed an environmental installation that will transform ICA's gallery. During their twenty-five years of collaboration, Olin and Eisenman have developed a unique approach to site development where neither the building nor the surrounding environment is given priority. Reminiscent of several key elements of the partners' many unbuilt projects, an abstract landscape of diverse forms and displaced ground fill the space.

In the larger architectural field, it is unusual for both landscape and building architects to have such a fruitful and generative relationship. Through their respective practices, Olin and Eisenman have developed a unique language and new terminologies for their thoroughly integrated approach to site development where neither the building nor the surrounding environment is given priority, but materialize in necessary coexistence. Their built projects include the Wexner Center for the Arts, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio and the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin, Germany.

Laurie D. Olin (born 1939, Fairbanks, Alaska) is a landscape architect and a principal of the Philadelphia-based landscape architecture/urban design firm, Olin Partnership. Olin's award-winning work is influenced by humanism, social and ecological movements, and the arts. He is also an educator who is the Practice Professor of Landscape Architecture and Regional Planning at the University of Pennsylvania. Olin is author of Across the Open Field, Essays Drawn on the English Landscape and is co-author of Vizcaya, An American Villa and its Makers (to be released November 2006). Peter Eisenman (born 1932, Newark, New Jersey) is a principal of the firm Eisenman Architects and is known as a primary theorist in contemporary architecture. Eisenman has authored several books including Diagram Diaries and Chora L Works, which he co-authored with Jacques Derrida. Eisenman was the first Irwin S. Chanin Distinguished Professor of Architecture at The Cooper Union and is currently also the Louis I. Kahn Professor of Architecture at Yale.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a 96-page catalog, released in October, which will document this new project; unrealized past projects since 1980; and will include essays by Laurie Olin and Peter Eisenman, an interview by Claudia Gould, ICA Director, and essay by Julia Czerniak, Syracuse University Associate Professor in the School of Architecture and winner of the 2000 Young Architects Forum ($25).

"Fertilizers: Olin/Eisenman" continues ICA's Architecture + Design exhibition series, launched in 1999 to provide a laboratory for artists and designers to realize their ideas in a visual arts and academic environment and for ICA to explore connections between the contemporary visual arts and the extended world of design, including cutting-edge architecture. The "Fertilizers" project furthers a primary goal of ICA's strategic plan—maintaining a critically acclaimed exhibition program—by adding to the scope and variety of exhibitions.

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Fertilizers: Olin / Eisenman
Peter Eisenman, Laurie Olin