Troy Conrad Therrien ∞ Curator, Architecture and Digital Initiatives @Guggenheim; faculty @ColumbiaGSAPP and @AASchool; citizen @MetisNationBC.

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present:

I am a Canadian-born citizen of the Métis Nation of British Columbia. I am Curator, Architecture and Digital Initiatives at the Guggenheim Museum where I organized the museum’s first ever online exhibition, Åzone Futures Market (2015), and co-organized Architecture Effects in Bilbao (2018-2019) and Countryside, The Future (2020) with Rem Koolhaas, Samir Bantal, AMO and others. I am an Adjunct Professor of Architecture at the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation and a co-tutor with Violette Van Parys in the Architectural Association Summer School where I teach seminars and studios on architecture, deep history, magic, and animism.


past:

I have been a creative technologist for Bruce Mau Design; a trend forecaster for Audi; an architectural designer in Paris, New York, and London; a computational mathematics researcher at a Human Computer Interaction Lab; an editor of the Advanced Research Practices in Architecture Journal; a co-founder of the Architecture Online Lab, director of The Energy Issue initiative, and co-curator the Experiments in Motion initiative at Columbia; and was co-founder of Therrien–Barley (now Consortia), an innovation and design agency servicing Fortune 500 design and technology companies. I received an MA in Architecture History and Theory from the Architectural Association in London, an MArch from Columbia University (American Institute of Architects Medal), and a BASc in Computer Engineering from the University of British Columbia.


key texts:

Junktime

“If ‘Junkspace is what remains after modernization has run its course,’ then Junktime is the mess digitization has made of temporality.”

After Belonging:Objects, Spaces, and Territories of the Ways We Stay in Transit, November 2016

“The Platonic system articulated how Promethean ‘Big Men’ could go about denting the universe, waging wars and building cities by channeling their will through architectural middle management, which would calcify the volatile gift of invention into regular victories and stable institutions. I call it the Promethean Gift Economy (PGE). It is a cipher for decoding [Venkatesh] Rao’s relevance to architecture.”

,

“Social Soup”

“Social soup is the bio-cultural-environmental complex of opinions, beliefs, desires, truths, values, myths, grudges, inventions, histories, conspiracies, rumors, plans, protocols, archetypes, dwellings, art, jokes, taboos, and other complex vectors of life woven through our mysterious emotional organic wetware. This mesh is our habitat. We don’t dwell in nature; we live amongst each other.”

Ed, forthcoming


teaching:

Age of the Architect:

“And now we’re hacking human DNA. While we’ve been on the lookout for Roko’s basilisk, the true singularity may have passed without a gasp. If Jeremy Narby’s hypothesis carries water, then we’ve left the mirror stage. Rather than aping the other side of the cave, we’ve begun to architect it.” (Columbia University, seminar, fall 2017 🔗)

Peak Flow:

“Flow has replaced fixity as the steady state of contemporary life.” (Columbia University, seminar, fall 2016 🔗)

Prometheanity:

“The computerization of everyday life has tethered us to the roller coaster of technological development and perhaps the only effect more pronounced than excitement is the anxiety it has spawned.” (Berlage Institute & Het Nieuwe Instituut, lecture, Rotterdam, fall 2015 📺)


"I will never be able to live in peace with the automaton, because I was formatted in the old world.

—Bifo Berardi