Architectural Record: What will you be working on at Berkeley?
Deborah Berke: I’m going to teach a design studio that will touch on two subjects that have long fascinated me. One is the nature of the workplace. I’m not so interested in ergonomic chairs, but much more in the broader sense of where people make things. In my studio at Yale this past semester I taught the design of a bourbon distillery in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, because I thought it would be great to actually understand what it takes to make a building in which a process happens.
The other is imaginative adaptation of old buildings—the term “adaptive reuse” sounds so deadly and boring—that creative rethinking of places that have been used for other things in the past, whether they’re brownfield sites or abandoned buildings or military bases or remnants of our industrial past that might be reconceived for an industrial future.
Is gender equity in the profession something you’ll be actively exploring during your residency?