Part II – M. Arch

Welcome to the Part II, MArch student exhibition of the Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff University. Congratulations to all our students and especially to those graduating and moving into the next stage of their careers – we wish you all the best and know that you are well equipped to address the current pandemic and other global challenges that lie ahead.

In light of the changes to society that we have witnessed, we encourage our students to continue with the same resilience and determination that has seen us all through these difficult times. From the changes in employment status of those in MArch 1, to the rapid changes in studio culture, collaboration and work ethic of MArch 2 students, we have witnessed and shared the difficulties and the delights that have culminated in the work exhibited here. While, we are not able to showcase the work in our usual Bute building setting, all students should be proud of their endeavour to establish our first online exhibition and to remain motivated during uncertain times.

The Masters in Architecture, asks students to take control of their education, forging an agenda personal to each and grounded within a critical, reflective, creative and interdisciplinary approach to local and global contexts. The MArch bridges the gap between practice and research across two distinctive years, asking questions of both. The focus in MArch 1 is on design and practice, acquiring professional design skills and knowledge within a year of education in practice. MArch 2 is organised around ten Design Units to deliver a ‘Design Thesis’ – a research-led architectural proposition that sets out a clear and cogent argument, a ‘primer’ investigation, and final architectural project that defines a design hypothesis or question. The design propositions in this exhibition demonstrate research of real-world issues and agendas which underpins it in all respects: cultural, social, formal, political, technological, contextual, tectonic, environmental, historical, philosophical and economic. This year the school welcomed 4 new units, that maintained our breadth of methodologies and subjects: Verticality; 1.5oC; Growing Structures; and Designing Histories.

We wish to thank all that have contributed to our MArch including practitioners, visiting critics and lecturers, consultants and examiners who have provided invaluable support, knowledge and expertise.

We look forward to continue working with those moving into MArch 2 as well as welcoming our new intake into MArch 1.

Dr Steve Coombs, Director of Undergraduate Teaching