ACADIA 2012: Synthetic Digital Ecologies

Hosted (in part) by California College of the Arts
October 18–21, 2012
Nave, San Francisco Campus

An exhibition opening reception will be held in the Nave Friday, Oct 19, at 7 p.m., and is open to the public.

ACADIA 2012: Synthetic Digital Ecologies is a conference that will highlight experimental research and projects that explore the reciprocity and synergy between bits and atoms, the digital and the physical, and between digital code and material logic.

The conference takes place at both UCSF (Thursday & Friday) and at CCA (Friday night, Saturday, Sunday).

The conference will bring together designers, researchers, and practitioners who engage, question, and aspire to stretch these boundaries. Architects, fabricators, engineers, media artists, technologists, hackers, and others in related fields of inquiry are invited to participate.


In addition to the 50+ peer-reviewed paper and project presentations, the ACADIA 2012 Conference, chaired by Architecture faculty member Jason Kelly Johnson, has confirmed a world-class group of keynote speakers. It is a diverse group of computational designers, fabricators, philosophers, and much more:

  • GREG LYNN UCLA / Yale / Architect + Educator, Los Angeles
  • NERI OXMAN MIT Media Lab / Architect + Educator, Cambridge, MA
  • SAUL GRIFFITH Otherlab / Tech Innovator, San Francisco
  • ACHIM MENGES U. Stuttgart / Architect + Educator, Germany
  • MANUAL DE LANDA Pratt / USC / Philosopher + Author, New York

Visit the event website for a complete schedule of events ».

Additionally we are organizing the following:

  • a cocktail event at the Autodesk Gallery (located adjacent to the San Francisco Ferry Building)
  • guided architecture and museum tours
  • several other social events


The exhibition, designed and curated by Nataly Gattegno and Brian Price, will include 10 peer-reviewed ACADIA projects; curated content including work by the ACADIA 2012 keynote speakers and notable emerging California designers including IwamotoScott, Matsys, Thom Faulders, Elena Manferdini, Dorus Sung, Oyler/Wu, Freeland Buck, among others (TBA); the four finalist submissions from the latest TEX-FAB / DFA competition "Applied Research Through Fabrication" will also be exhibited, judged, and discussed in a special panel session.


Workshop registration is now open!

Workshops will take place on Sunday, October 21, at CCA on the San Francisco campus. (Please note ACADIA 2012 registered conference attendees will receive a significant discount on workshop registration.)

"ALGORITHMS & MATHEMATICS" -- Leader: Edmund Harris with Celento, Lockyear, Underwood (Rhinoscript + Grasshopper / McNeel)
"ROBOTIC FABRICATION" -- Leaders: Proto and Kruysman (SCI-Arch Staubli Robot + Maya, Autodesk)
"PARAMETRIC SURFACES" -- Leader: Andrew Kudless with TBA (Grasshopper / McNeel)
"ROBOTIC PROTOTYPES" -- Leaders: Shiloh, DeLeon, Johnson (Arduino + Grasshopper + Firefly)
"COMPUTATIONAL DESIGN STRATEGIES WITH DESIGNSCRIPT" -- Leader: Robert Aish with Fisher, Tierney (DesignScript / Autodesk)
"PYTHON SCRIPTING WITH REVIT / VASARI" -- Leader: Nathan Miller (Python + Revit + Vasari / Autodesk)