7 episodes

Historically, the work of Black Architects has not been recognized at the same level and through the same lens as their peers. Although they attain the same education, perform on the same project teams, and complete similar project types, their credentials are questioned, and their work often goes unnoticed.
As little girls, hosts, Saundra Little and Karen Burton dreamed of being Architects. Join them on a very personal journey as they weave together stories from the careers and lives of Black Architects and highlight Hidden-In-Plain-Site projects for their award-winning Noir Design Parti project that was birthed in Detroit. Now the world can get to know the very significant contributions contemporary and trailblazing Architects have made to the profession, the community and major cities across the U.S.

Hidden in Plain Site Noir Design Parti // Gābl Media

    • Arts
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

Historically, the work of Black Architects has not been recognized at the same level and through the same lens as their peers. Although they attain the same education, perform on the same project teams, and complete similar project types, their credentials are questioned, and their work often goes unnoticed.
As little girls, hosts, Saundra Little and Karen Burton dreamed of being Architects. Join them on a very personal journey as they weave together stories from the careers and lives of Black Architects and highlight Hidden-In-Plain-Site projects for their award-winning Noir Design Parti project that was birthed in Detroit. Now the world can get to know the very significant contributions contemporary and trailblazing Architects have made to the profession, the community and major cities across the U.S.

    "Duality" - Naomi Beasley-Porter

    "Duality" - Naomi Beasley-Porter

    Naomi Beasley-Porter is a native Detroiter and lover of all things Detroit. She is a proud East Sider and Cass Technician with a Master's Degree in Architecture from the  University of Detroit Mercy (where she also adjuncts). With a combined 10+ years of experience, Naomi worked in architecture firms but was searching for more fulfilling work. Post professional architectural practice, she translated her skillset to development finance with the City of Detroit, where she currently manages federal funds to support the building of various affordable housing development types. Naomi has found passion in doing work where the outcome directly benefits the people of Detroit; and is invested in continuing to learn, grow, and evolve to have an even greater impact in her City.
    When Naomi is not working, she loves to spend time with her husband, family, and friends, explore Detroit, try new foods, and watch Christmas movies. In years past, she has been active with various organizations within her community and the architectural profession; she looks forward to circling back soon.
    Detroit City of Design Spotlight
    Affordable Housing For Detroiters: 7 Point, $203 Million Plan for 2022
    https://detroitmi.gov/departments/housing-and-revitalization-department/affordable-housing/detroit-housing-plans#:~:text=Affordable%20Housing%20For%20Detroiters%3A%207,to%20be%20funded%20in%202022.
    OSI Art Apartments
    https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/detroit/2020/10/15/osi-art-affordable-housing-detroit-woodbridge/3654761001/
    Freelon Apartments at Sugar Hill
    https://www.poah.org/property/michigan/freelon-sugar-hill 
    Woodward West
    https://woodwardwest.city/   
    Show Topic Link
    NOMA 2012 Conference In Detroit

    • 1 hr 20 min
    "Detroit Adjacent" - Kendal Bowman

    "Detroit Adjacent" - Kendal Bowman

    Kendal Bowman is a licensed Architect in Illinois and Michigan with 14+ years of experience in the profession of design.  He is currently the Principal of Arcos Studio, LLC [Arcos] along with a Project Architect at TMP Architecture, INC [TMP] doing incremental development and Educational Architecture respectively.  Over the years, he has garnered experience in a myriad of Architectural sectors allowing for his portfolio of work to extend from historic renovation and preservation of existing buildings in Detroit to Airport Additions in Abu Dhabi.  At every juncture, Kendal has quickly and effectively learned the intricacies of each sector to become an indispensable part of a team.
    As Principal of Arcos Studio, Kendal has returned to his hometown - Pontiac, Michigan - to work through the development of the city with the mantra ‘Access + Equity By Design.  He is focusing on affordably renovating single and multi-family homes while producing developments at a smaller scale for the community.  He is actively involved with community-based programs and independently working with individuals looking to further their experience in the Architecture and Design field. 
    His position at TMP as a Project Architect has afforded him the opportunity to work on educational architecture in urban landscapes with the hopes of providing a much-needed voice to the design process.
    From a community lens, he is President-elect for the Detroit Chapter of the National Organization of Minority Architects looking to build on the success of his predecessors and leave his mark on the chapter where he can.
    Show Topic Links:
    History of Pontiac Michigan https://www.pontiac.mi.us/about/history/city_history.php
    Pontiac Commercial Historic District https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontiac_Commercial_Historic_District
    University of Michigan https://taubmancollege.umich.edu/
    https://www.nomadetroit.org/about
    https://www.tmp-architecture.com/
     
    Favorite Projects (no particular order):
    1. Abu Dhabi Airport Addition - UAE - https://www.ghafari.com/projects/abu-dhabi-terminal-1-3-improvements
    2. Capitol Park Renovation (1212 Griswold, 1145 Griswold, 1249 Griswold) – Detroit https://www.miplace.org/4a735d/globalassets/documents/project-profile-pdfs/griswold_lofts.pdf
    3. David Whitney Building – Detroit https://www.detroitnews.com/story/business/2022/05/25/david-whitney-building-undergo-renovation-add-hotel-rooms/9931380002/
    4. Record Copy Services - Chicago
    5. AMMROC MRO - Al Ain, UAE
    6. Osi Apartments – Detroit https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/detroit/2020/10/15/osi-art-affordable-housing-detroit-woodbridge/3654761001/

    • 1 hr 24 min
    "HIGHER CALLING" - Sara Timberlake

    "HIGHER CALLING" - Sara Timberlake

    Sara is a Detroit-based architectural designer, educator, mentor and theorist. She currently works at Quinn Evans, an architectural firm where she works at the intersection of design, planning, and community engagement in order to bring her clients’ visions to life and collaborate with project communities. 
    Outside of her professional pursuits, she is the Youth Outreach chair for NOMA National, where she has led Project Pipeline - a free, five-day youth architecture camp - for the past 4 years. She is also engaged with her research “Call and Response: Speculation of a Future Typology for the Black Church”, which aims to clarify a design language to the historic American Black Church, while proposing a building typology for the Black Church in this current moment. 
    5 favorite projects
    Woodbridge Neighborhood & Design Guidelines - Woodbridge, Detroit, MI [Quinn Evans] Allied Media LOVE Building - Woodbridge, Detroit, MI [Quinn Evans] Mosaic Eastern Market - Eastern Market, Detroit, MI [Quinn Evans]Michigan Architecture Prep Program - Detroit, MI [UM TCAUP/Michigan-Mellon Fellowship] Dyett High School - Washington Park, Chicago, IL [Brook Architecture]
    Detroit City of Design Spotlight
    20th Century Civil Rights Sites (Michigan)
    Second Baptist Church – Detroit
    Bethel AME Church – Detroit
    African Methodist Episcopal Church (denomination)
    Shrine of the Black Madonna – Detroit
    New Bethel Baptist Church - Detroit
    The Black Church, PBS
    Nation of Islam Mosque No. 1
    Donald White, Michigan's first licensed black architect, broke new ground – Michigan Radio
    Show Topic Links
    National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) and NOMA: Baseline On Belonging
    University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning
    NOMAS Student Design...

    • 1 hr 36 min
    “Master Builder” - Damon Dickerson

    “Master Builder” - Damon Dickerson

    Since graduating from the University of Michigan and completing two travel studio programs, Damon Dickerson has worked professionally as an architectural designer throughout Michigan. As a native of Ypsilanti, Damon and his family moved to Detroit with the intention to aid in the City’s revitalization. With a belief that equitable development starts with community, he has always leveraged his passion and architectural skillset to seek solutions to issues stemming from built environment inequities. With a hand for design, Damon leads coordination and documentation efforts in various areas of small to large-scale projects. Damon has worked on a myriad project types; including residential, sports and entertainment, family recreation centers, tenant and landlord build outs. He enjoys designing, developing, and coordinating the client’s vision through all project phases. He demonstrates an understanding of municipal code, and consistently works with requisite disciplines in interpreting their project-based goals and aspirations.
    5 projects Damon loves:
    Castelvecchio Museum – ScarpaChaffers’ Ann Arbor Cottage – ChaffersSugar Hill Mixed-Use – AdjayeSunken House – AdjayeCharles H. Wright Museum of African American History – Sims|Varner
     Architects he’d love to know more about:
    Jack TravisDiebedo Francis KéréShigeru BanRem Koolhaas
    Detroit City of Design Spotlight
    Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History – Sims-Varner AssociatesAnd Still We Rise exhibitionHoward Sims, FAIAHarold Varner, FAIAHubert Massey, artist, muralistHip-Hop ArchitectureDavid Hughes: Afrocentric ArchitectureJack TravisThe Afrocentric Idea by Molefi Kete AsanteNational Organization of Minority Architects Conference
    Show Topic Links:
    University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture & Planning
    Washtenaw Community College
    National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMAS)
    Ypsilanti, Michigan
    Dokes Design Architecture
    Jonathan Siegel: “Architect as Developer” (EntreArchitect: Context & Clarity)
    Damon and Ashley Dickerson: Pioneers in Rebuilding Detroit (POLITICO)
    Tower Pinkster
    a...

    • 1 hr 6 min
    "Resilience" - Tiffany Brown

    "Resilience" - Tiffany Brown

    Tiffany Brown has Bachelor of Science in architecture, Master of Architecture, and Master of Business Administration degrees from Lawrence Technological University. With nearly 20 years of experience in architecture, she is now executive director of the National Organization of Minority Architects, which focuses on fostering justice and equity in communities of color.
    Tiffany was awarded a grant by The Knight Foundation to launch 400 Forward, an initiative aimed to support the education and career development of the next 400 women architects with an underlying focus on African American girls. She recently had the honor of being named among Architizer’s 100 Women to Watch in Architecture and has received several recognitions and awards from leaders in the industry including the American Institute of Architects. Tiffany has worked as adjunct professor at LTU’s College of Architecture and Design and is a Community Engagement Mentor to LTU’s Marburger STEM Center. 
     
    Tiffany’s Top 5 Projects:
    1.      Gardenview Estates
    2.      Brewster-Douglass Demolition
    3.      Coleman Young Municipal Renovation
    4.      Mumford High School
    5.      400Forward
    Detroit City of Design Spotlight
    Andrews University School of Architecture and Interior Design - https://www.andrews.edu/said/architecture
    Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris University - https://kcad.ferris.edu/programs/graduate/master-of-architecture/index.html
    Lawrence Technological University College of Architecture and Design - https://www.ltu.edu/architecture_and_design/
    University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning - https://taubmancollege.umich.edu/
    University of Detroit Mercy School of Architecture & Community Development - https://architecture.udmercy.edu/
     
    Show Topic Links:
    National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA) - https://www.noma.net/
    NOMA Detroit - https://www.nomadetroit.org/
    Hamilton Anderson Associates - https://www.hamilton-anderson.com/
    SmithGroup - https://www.smithgroup.com/
    a...

    • 1 hr 22 min
    "Audacity" - Kimberly Dowdell

    "Audacity" - Kimberly Dowdell

    Kimberly Dowdell is a licensed architect and frequent speaker on the topic of architecture, leadership, diversity, sustainability and the future of cities. In her recently completed term as the 2019-2020 national president of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA), she worked closely with her board of directors and staff to increase opportunities for women and people of color to gain more equitable access to the building professions.
    She also more than doubled the organization’s membership and significantly raised NOMA’s profile during her two-years in office. Kimberly’s career aspirations are rooted in her upbringing in Detroit, where she was initially driven to utilize architecture as a tool to revitalize cities. She earned her Bachelor of Architecture at Cornell University and her Master of Public Administration at Harvard University. Her professional experience has spanned from architecture to government and teaching to real estate development.
    Kimberly is currently a Principal in the Chicago studio of HOK, a leading global design firm. She co-founded the SEED Network in 2005 and has been a LEED accredited professional since 2007. In 2022, Kimberly was elected to serve as the 2024 National President of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). She was also elected to the Cornell University Board of Trustees. Kimberly’s overarching mission is to improve people’s lives, by design.
    Detroit City of Design Spotlight
    Cranbrook Schools is a private, PK–12 preparatory school located on a 319-acre (129 ha) campus in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. The schools comprise a co-educational elementary school, a middle school with separate schools for boys and girls, and a co-educational high school with boarding facilities. Cranbrook Schools is part of the Cranbrook Educational Community (CEC), which includes the Cranbrook Institute of Science, the Cranbrook Academy of Art, and Cranbrook House and Gardens. (Nearby Christ Church Cranbrook remains outside this formal structure.) The Cranbrook community was established by publishing mogul George Booth, who bought the site of today's Cranbrook community in 1904. Cranbrook was designated a National Historic Landmark on June 29, 1989 for its significant architecture and design. It attracts tourists from around the world.[1][2] Approximately 40 acres (160,000 m2) of Cranbrook Schools' campus are gardens.
    Show...

    • 1 hr 7 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
3 Ratings

3 Ratings

JW Harris ,

Top Tier!

Absolutely fantastic! I’m a huge fan of architecture and design and the impact it has on our lived experiences. The hosts have great chemistry and I really enjoyed hearing their guest’s origin story. Their love and devotion to Detroit definitely shines through. Hearing about the amazing architects from the area and the journey of black women in the field was eye opening. 10/10 would definitely recommend!

GrannyDavis ,

Plain Site

This podcast was informative and entertaining! Thank you!

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