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Dear ACSF members,

First of all, for those living in the United States, we wish you all a belated Happy Thanksgiving. Second, and before getting in our usual list of articles, design work, books, videos, conferences, and more, we would like to share news and information about our members. As always, this newsletter is curated by Mike Crosbie and myself and includes suggestions by members like you. 
We hope you find this material useful and that you and your loved ones are safe and well during these trying times.
Members News
Michael J. Crosbie has published a new book that proves you are never too young to fall in love with architecture. Arches to Zig-Zags: An Architectural ABC (Oro Editions, 2020, is geared to the young and the young-at-heart who wish to explore architecture from A to Z. Mike is happy to inscribe copies of the book if you send them along to him at:
Dennis Winters has published a chapter in the book Exploring Sexuality and Spirituality (Brill Publishers 2020), work that was built upon his presentation at the ACSF 7 Symposium in Ghost Ranch, NM: “Georgia O’Keeffe and Spirituality of the Sexually Charged Landscape.” For more info:
Rev. Donna Schaper announces that her Judson Memorial Church has received a $1 Million Grant from the Lilly Endowment that is part of nearly $93 million given to help congregations thrive across the nation. For more information, see

Amita Sinha
 shares the publication of her book Cultural Landscapes of India: Imagined, Enacted, and Reclaimed(University of Pittsburg Press, 2020). This book centers around imagining, enacting, and reclaiming landscapes as subjects and settings of living cultural heritage. Drawing on case studies from different regions of India, Sinha offers new interpretations of links between land and culture using different ways of seeing—transcendental, romantic, and utilitarian. For more information, see

Randy Sovich announces that the Journal T3xture is going to be in an exhibit: ‘New Urban Challenges’, at this year’s edition of the New Generations Festival, scheduled for 16, 17, 18 December 2020 at the Spanish Royal Academy in Rome. The Festival is a zoom event, and the journals will be in a physical traveling exhibit with the first stop at the SRA in Rome in March 2021.

Gonzalo Rios Vizcarra announces that the English of his book is now available: Poetics from an Inhabited World (Universidad Catolica de Santa Maria 2020), a beautifully illustrated and well-articulated text engaging the cultural and spiritual dimension of the built environment across Earth. For more, see
Amita Sarin is inviting ACSF members to participate in a film project entitled “A Sacred Piece of Home: Places of Worship built by Immigrant communities.” Amita is
developing a cross-cultural documentary about sacred architecture in America that has been commissioned by distinct immigrant groups over the centuries. As an intermediate phase to raising funds to hire videographers and other staff for this undertaking, Sarin is seeking specialists – architects, architectural historians, religious historians and ethnic historians - who will serve as our advisory think tank and who might eventually be interviewed for the documentary. More details are available on the website This had just been published when the pandemic struck and destroyed all hopes of funding for this year. When the website is revised, she will probably not be limited to the three cities mentioned but will include pertinent sites, structures and congregations wherever they are in the US. If you are interested in being involved in this endeavor, please email Amita Sarin ( ) with your questions and some information about your work.

We are delighted to inform you that the two lectures featuring ACSF Outstanding Achievement Awardees of 2020 are now online, on our ACSF youtube channel. Please, feel free to watch and share them with others:
General Articles
Buddhism’s Calming Practice
Online seekers discover a salve for suffering and the impermanence of things.

Is Democracy Sacred?
The author argues although politics relies on virtue, this does not make it religious.
Does Heaven Exist?
A review of a new book that makes an argument that paradise is a real place.
Listening to Sacred Stillness
The author considers the spiritual dimensions of the act of waiting.

'We're reclaiming these traditions': Black women embrace the spiritual realm
There's a revived fascination with witchcraft and the occult. For Black women, mysticism’s appeal is about empowerment and taking up space in a world that often marginalizes them.
How Should an Atheist Think About Death?
An interview with philosopher Todd May on approaching death in the absence of personal spirituality. 
Embrace the Woo-Woo
Have you considered embracing risk and the adventurousness as part of spiritual practice?

The Next Decade Could Be Even Worse
A historian believes he has discovered iron laws that predict the rise and fall of societies. He has bad news.

Does Knowing God Just Take Practice?
An anthropologist explores belief as a form of expertise. 
The Winter of Discontent
As we enter the season of taking stock of the past year, the writer suggests that spiritual reflection might reveal paths to renewal.
Misinformation is a Matter of Repetition
Using neuroscience to defend against “cognitive fluency.”
Protecting Your Faith
We are seeing an increasing intrusion of religious faith into politics. While many of us are rightfully concerned about the damage this will do to politics, we must also contemplate: the damage this can do to religion

Whatever brings a person to God is holy—whether you like it or not Twenty years as a spiritual director, accompanying a wide variety of people in their spiritual journeys, has taught me many things. One of the most important is this: God meets people where they are.

What Happens to Faith-Based Charity?
As organized religions shrink, their charities are imperiled. 
Dying the Buddhist Way
Buddhist-oriented hospices offer an alternative to convention Western view of life and death. 
Biden’s Faith Leaders
What high-profile clergy might the new President consult?

Lang Lang: The Pianist Who Plays Too Muchly
On a new recording of Bach’s “Goldberg” Variations, the superstar artist stretches the music beyond taste.

Utah Mysterious Object discovered and then disappeared …
A mysterious metal monolith discovered last week in the desert in the US state of Utah has disappeared, officials say.

Greg Lewis – The art of Faith
Artist Greg Lewis is a man of many talents. His career spanning nearly five decades has been challenging, educational, and inspirational.
The British Mosque: An Architectural and Social History; by Shahed Saleem (Historic England, 2018)
Here is the book review published in JAE

The Sistine Chapel
 (Callaway 2020 -- an amazing publication on Michelangelo's work at $22,000!)
The publication of The Sistine Chapel trilogy is a pioneering technological breakthrough.To create the ultimate book of these masterpieces, a team of photographers made more than 270,000 digital images over the course of 67 consecutive nights, while the Sistine Chapel was closed to the public.
Faith in African Lived Christianity. Bridging Anthropological and Theological Perspectives (Brill 2019)
Faith in African Lived Christianity – Bridging Anthropological and Theological Perspectivesoffers a comprehensive, empirically rich, and interdisciplinary approach to the study of faith in African Christianity. The book brings together anthropology and theology in the study of how faith and religious experiences shape the understanding of social life in Africa. 
Architecture, Festival, and the City, edited by Jemma Browne, Christian Frost, and Ray Lucas (Routledge, 2020)
This book examines how festivals can be used as a lens to examine the relationship between city and citizen and questions whether this is fixed through time, or has been transformed as a response to changes in the modern urban condition. 

The Architecture of Bathing. Bath, Landscape
, Art; by Christie Pearson (MIT Press 2020)
A celebration of communal bathing—swimming pools, saunas, beaches, ritual baths, sweat lodges, and more—viewed through the lens of architecture and landscape.

Secular Discourse on Sin in the Anthropocene. What's Wrong with the World? By Ernst M. Conradie's-Wrong-with-the-World
This book utilizes a notion of social diagnostics to explore not only the surface-level symptoms of ecological destruction but also its ultimate causes. 

How Conflict Shaped Us, by Margaret MacMillan
A Historian Explains What Civilization Owes to War


A Nobel-Winning Economist Goes to Burning Man.
Amid the desert orgies, Paul Romer investigates a provocative question: Is this bacchanal a model of urban planning?
Scientists clock the fastest interval of time in 'zeptoseconds'
A theory from Albert Einstein has been put into practice to observe extremely shortest time intervals between two events.

Archaeologists Are Just Beginning to Unearth the Mummies and Secrets of Saqqara
Archaeologists Are Just Beginning to Unearth the Mummies and Secrets of Saqqara.
Zumthor in L.A.
The Iconoclast Remaking Los Angeles’s Most Important Museum

Islamic Religious and Cultural Center in Ljubljana by Bevk Perović arhitekti
The ‘specificity’ of the new location for the Islamic Religious and Cultural Centre is precisely its complete lack of ‘specificity’ – an area that is near the city centre, but abandoned and forgotten, in a fragile undeveloped state, with an uncertain urban future. 
The Return of Superstudio and the Anti-Architecture Ideology
It is 2020, a time where the profession has seen a slow resurgence of young, one-off practices devoted to explorations in typology, representation, and research on the “what could be” without the pressure of projects that are built, published, or even that generate revenue. 
Architecture x Nigeria: 3 Designers Discuss Their Favorite Projects and How They Created Them
Parpend, a design studio from Lagos, Nigeria, interviews every year a group of architects to discuss their favorite projects and how they created them. Believing firmly that design should be a fusion of function and expression, statements are compiled in a publication in order to highlight the designers’ creative process to achieving good design

The ‘Hidden Figures’ of Architecture
The overlooked contributions of African American architects.
Americans’ Preferred Architecture For Federal Buildings
A national civic art society survey conducted by the Harris Poll. See also:
MoMA launches a new institute to explore the intersection between built and natural environments
The Museum of Modern Art in New York City has established a new research institute (made possible by Argentinian-born progenitor of “green” architecture Emilio Ambasz) that sets out to further understand the complex relationship between architecture and ecology. 
Allmannajuvet Zinc Mine Museum in Norway by Peter Zumthor: ‘The progeny of an artist-architect’
Paired with a client who indulged his investigations into context, culture, and materials, Zumthor has brought new life to a once-dead landscape

Retaining Fallingwater’s Iconic Connection Between Indoors & Outdoors’s-iconic-connection-between-indoors-outdoors
This article is about the restoration of the glass at Fallingwater. Apparently, they have replaced all the original glass with iron-free glass that is crystal clear. Since we are hopeful that can convene in Fallingwater in early June 2021 for our ACSF Symposium, this article may be of special interest.
Videos, Films, & Radio
Serenbe Stories
Serenbe was designed by ACSF long-standing member Phillip Tabb. We hosted our third ACSF Symposium there in June 2013 so, to many of us, Serenbe is a place close to our heart. In this podcast, many will find stories very related to our area of interest. This podcast covers a great territory, from the original Serenbe story of how Serenbe Founder Steve Nygren and his family discovered and developed the land that is now the leading wellness community, to stories featuring many of the people that inspired, encouraged, and influenced how it was created. 

The Last Nuclear Bomb Memorial

Total Prize worth -6,000 euros (registration deadline 21 April 2021)
Omuli Museum of the Horse
Total Prize worth -10,000 euros (registration deadline 23 April 2021)

How Might the Pandemic Change Architectural Education?
The authors argue that this historic event makes how we educate architects ripe for change.
From Architecture School to Practice: How Famous and Emerging Figures Made the Transition
Architecture school is a place of experiment and a testing ground for innovative ideas. The academic work and student projects can bring to light the focus of an entire career, shape the backbone for an architectural theory, and crystalize values. How do their studies and formative years reflect on the later work of different architects?
University of Pennsylvania Introduces Underserved Youth to the Power of Design
This past summer, the nonprofit design practice, PennPraxis, in partnership with The Fresh Air Fund, piloted a new program, Virtual Design Studio, that sparked the imaginations of nearly 150 students to show how design has the power to change the built environment. 
Nuevos Paradigms, Nuevas Arquitecturas?
Open call for submission to ARQUITECTURAS DEL SUR No. 51, January 2021 (in Spanish)
For full description of the call and details, see:

T3xture Issue #5 Call for Submissions: Repose and Energy

Our interest in repose and motion follows from our exploration of the origin of ornament (kosmos) in earlier issues of T3xture. As Bloomer noted in T3xture #4, the Greeks adopted a term for world (mundus, also meaning “cosmetics”) derived from “ornament,” on account of the diversity of elements and the beauty of the heavenly bodies. They call it κόσμος, which means “ornament,” for, with our bodily eyes, we see nothing more beautiful than the world.”  The cosmos is in eternal motion; there is no rest; the sun, the moon, the clouds, the seas are always moving. Repose is re-pause. It is a stopping before returning, a time for reflection. It is also a repositioning, a rearranging in space. It is a city in repose prior to an energizing renewal. It is a garden. T3xture is seeking essays, poems, building and landscape projects, and art that address the diad, Repose and Energy.We are looking for original and previously unpublished work. The submission deadline is DECEMBER 15th. Guidelines are posted on the T3xture website: . If you have question contact ACSF member Randy Sovich at <>
Translating Ambiance
Issue 6 of Unlikely Journal for Creative Arts entitled Translating Ambiance is out. This edition was born from an exhibition in 2019 inviting 12 sound artists to 'translate' ambiances from an environmental location into the gallery. The edition extended an international Call for Works for creative practice papers and scholarly articles. The journal is particularly well suited to the theme of creative practice as it is designed to embed audio, images and media to enhance the reading experience. Consequently, each of the translations can be simultaneously experienced via text and media. Please enjoy:

Fashion, Body and Culture International Conference 
30th to 31st January 2021. London/Online, United Kingdom 
How does our dress or hair style create our identity and status? How is it concerned with sexual and body politics? Is the desire to be "in fashion" universal or unique to Western culture? These and other questions we set out to discuss at the confer 
Organized by: London Centre for Interdisciplinary Research  
Contact person: Elmer de Vos 
Deadline for abstracts/proposals: 5th December 2020 
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