University is now on Air: Broadcasting Modern Architecture

Exhibition and online broadcast at CCA, Montreal, Canada


From November 5, 2017 until April 1, 2018
Six sets of sofas and televisions are currently inviting visitors of the Canadian Center for Architecture in Montréal to get cosy, lean back and watch episodes of the „A305 History of Architecture and Design, 1890–1939“ television broadcasts, a unique BBC program that was launched in 1975 as part of third-year undergraduate arts course, offered by the Open University. The set-ups are are part of the exhibition „University is now on Air: Broadcasting Modern Architecture“ on show at the CCA until April 1 2018. They are a contemporary re-enactment of the time between 1975 and 1983 when architectural knowledge on modern architecture was broadcasted into every British living room. Fascinated by this radical project for sharing knowledge via mass media curator Joaquin Moreno provides a media archeology around the twenty-four television episodes that were part of a broader body of work which included broadcasting supplements, radio programs, a radiovision booklet, anthologies, and other course materials.
Other than classic lectures the episodes designed and directed by Tim Benton (Professor emeritus at the Open University) also provide vivid interior insights into buildings. The tv features show English houses or large housing estates, they introduce famous modern architects such Adolf Loos, Erich Mendelsohn and Hans Scharoun or explore single case studies such as Le Corbusier’s Villa Savoy.
While back in the 70s the tv viewers were consuming modern architecture in their often unmodern homes, CCA now offers the opportunity for everyone to revisit the experience – not only in the exhibition but also at home. In the context of the online issue „A history of references” the CCA is publishing one of the twenty-four television episodes of the course every week through 29 March 2018. Via their website people can tune in and stream the history on the modern movement (as written in the early 70s) on their own laptops, sofas, or where ever.

Next Episode:
November, 24 2018 on The Universal International Exhibition (Paris 1900) and The International Exhibition of Decorative Arts (Paris 1925)
Further Schedule:
1 Dec - Charles Rennie Mackintosh: Hill House
8 Dec - Industrial Architecture: AEG and Fagus Factories
15 Dec - Frank Lloyd Wright: The Robie House
22 Dec - M. Schindler: The Lovell Beach House
5 Jan - Erich Mendelsohn: The Einstein Tower
12 Jan - Adolf Loos
19 Jan - The Bauhaus at Weimar, 1919-1923
26 Jan - Berlin Siedlungen / The Weissenhof Siedlung, Stuttgart, 1927
2 Feb - Hans Scharoun
9 Feb - Le Corbusier: Villa Savoye
16 Feb - English Flats of the Thirties
23 Feb - Wood or Metal? English Furniture in the Thirties
2 Mar - Edwin Lutyens: Deanery Gardens
9 Mar - The London Underground
16 Mar - Moderne and Modernistic / The Other Tradition
23 Mar - Mechanical Services in the Cinema
29 Mar - The Semi-Detached House / The Housing Question
More About: Twenty-four episodes of A305 broadcasted on cca.qc.ca