Engaging Communities with Sandra Vivanco

Sandra I. Vivanco is the founding principal of A+D, Architecture + Design in San Francisco. Based on the premise that inclusiveness and design excellence can and should co-exist, the work of A+D is globally recognized and operates at multiple scales. As one of a handful of Latina-owned architecture firms in the country, A+D explores cultural identity representation as design inspiration for new and invigorated public spaces. Vivanco has practiced architecture in Japan, Portugal, Peru, Italy, Mexico and Brazil. Most notably, she worked for Portuguese Pritzker prize winner Alvaro Siza in 1990.

As a California College of the Arts Professor of Architecture and Diversity Studies and Co-Director of the CCA BuildLab; Vivanco skillfully synthesizes theory and practice in her work. Sometimes design proposals start in the classroom and are deployed as design-build projects. Other times a professional commission might find a different life in the studio. Two successful recent examples are the permanent built interventions by her students at Plaza Adelante - a community service and art center for Latino immigrants - and an urban design studio proposing a temporary global event on 38 acres of waterfront remediated land owned by PG&E. Vivanco is a San Francisco Mission neighborhood resident and activist, an avid dancer, a proud mother of two public school graduates and is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and Italian.

In this episode, Sandra and I discuss so many interesting topics - the scrappy beginnings of her architecture practice, the melding of architecture and diversity studies in her curricula, on why representation matters, on engaging communities throughout the design process, and more!

Learn more about Sandra at: https://www.cca.edu/academics/faculty/svivanco

Learn more about A+D Architecture at: www.a-plus-d.com



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