Architects in Training? Interest Builds for New Winter Activity


Architects in Training? Interest Builds for New Winter Activity

Building things has been a favorite preoccupation for boys since the beginning of time.

With the weather turning cooler, Greenies have a new way to follow their impulses this year at Christ School. Fine Arts teacher Katie Massaroni has introduced Architectural Design and Modeling as a Winter Activity.

Ten boys have been meeting on weekdays after school in the Kennedy-Herterich Art Studio – Cannon Flinders '23, Weller Kreimer '19, Mason Lamb '21, Tommy Li '21, Philip Lopez '23, Robby McAlister '22, Owen Riley '23, Alexander Rivera '23, Spencer Strickland '22, and Doug Bland '19. Massaroni has designed a program for them consisting of four parts – 1. Making commercial and residential models out of paper, cardboard, and wood; 2. Visiting places of architectural significance; 3. Interviews with architects; 4. Observing the past through TV shows, books, and floor plans.

"I'm coming at it from the perspective of an art historian who loves buildings and spaces," Massaroni said. "I'm interested in the way that spaces make us feel, the form of buildings. I'm by no means even an amateur (architect) and this is very much meant to be a toe-dipping type of thing for the guys, too. So far, the reception has been positive."

Last week, the boys learned about the history of downtown Asheville structures with a walking tour and hosted a unique guest speaker.

Asheville cyclist Lauren Tamayo won a silver medal at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and is now a general contractor/builder for a local company she co-owns, LMT Homes. Tamayo spoke to the Greenies and brought along her Olympic medal for the boys to hold and photograph.

Earlier this week, the boys met with ARCA Design, an Asheville company which worked on Christ School's Close-Krieger Athletic Center.

Philip said he came into Architectural Design and Modeling with a pretty blank slate.

"So far, I am enjoying this activity for several reasons," he said. "First, I have learned a lot about architecture as it is more complicated than I thought. Second, I have more time to spend with my friends in this activity which is great. Finally, I think that drawing buildings with horizon lines and vanishing points is very fun. This is probably my favorite part of the class so far."

"The group is a lot of fun," Cannon said. "This is because we get to talk to real architects and learn what it takes to be an architect. We get to learn useful skills such as drawing and modeling."