Why Aren’t All Buildings Beautiful?: An open forum on how building aesthetics are established and discussed

Over the past few decades, scientists and academics have conducted considerable research into the human response to building appearance, merging the subjective with the objective. Technological developments now allow glimpses into how the brain processes these evaluations. 

Participants will explore their own perceptions and preferences, compare them to other participants and non-participants, and see how they relate to what researchers have discovered.

With attendee participation, the session will review recent research, debate about building appearance, and compile conclusions into a set of takeaway points that can provide guidance to practitioners, as well as a means of furthering the discussion. 

Session Details

Session ID: 
Friday, May 26th, 2017: 2:00pm - 5:30pm
3.0 Structured/Core AIA LU
Venue : 

Session Speaker(s)

Ian Ellingham, PhD, OAA, FRAIC

Shareholder / Associate, Cambridge Architectural Research Limited and Shareholder / Vice-President, Corinium Project Strategies

After a development career, Dr.Ellingham focuses on research, writing and teaching. With graduate degrees in Land Economy and Urban Studies from Cambridge University, he has co-authored the books 100+25 Years: OAA Perspectives on a Quarter Century (2006, OAA), Whole Life Sustainability (2013, RIBA Publishing), and New Generation Whole-Life Costing: Property and Construction Decision-Making Under Uncertainty (2014, Taylor & Francis).

Gordon Grice, BArch, OAA, FRAIC

Editor, OAA Perspectives; Creative Director, FORREC Ltd.; Catalogue Editor and Senior Advisor, ASAI; and Member of the Quadrangle Society, Massey College

Gordon has pursued concurrent careers as architect, illustrator, writer, editor and art director. He is currently Editor of OAA Perspectives, and a Creative Director for FORREC, an entertainment design firm. Gordon’s writing and illustrations have appeared internationally. He has edited over 30 books on art and architecture, recently, with co-editor Ian Ellingham, 100+25 Years: OAA Perspectives on a Quarter Century.

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24-27 May 2017
Ottawa, Ontario

About Us

The Royal Architectural Institute of Canada and the Ontario Association of Architects have partnered to present the 2017 Festival of Architecture May 24-27, 2017 in Ottawa.

Join the conversation:


For general information, please contact us at:

  • festival@raic.org 
  • 1-844-856-RAIC ext 200
  • 613-241-3600
  • 330-55 Murray Street, Ottawa, ON K1N 5M3