AUGUST 3-10, 2014


Immersion Vermont is a week-long intensive design workshop for practicing architects and emerging professionals focused on contextually responsive architecture. This is unique opportunity to learn directly from three renowned architects surrounded by great architecture and a stunning landscape. The program will be held at the Woodstock Farm House and Barn project by Rick Joy Architects.

What does it mean to design for a specific place?

What is embedded in the term “Contextually Responsive Design”? Is this an empty phrase to be tossed in the scrap pile alongside “appropriate design”, “sustainable”, and “green”, Or can it serve as a more specific guide for action? What are the ramifications of the term for building performance, or material conservation and use, or for construction methodologies, site selection, or orientation? Equally important to consider, what does contextually responsive design say about patterns of habitation and navigation?

What does it mean to create architecture, and an experience of architecture, that is intrinsically connected to and inseparable from its site?

These are the central questions we will begin with, and attempt to address at Immersion.

Through direct investigation, formal discussion, and intensive experimentation, we will try to carve a new way of understanding and responding to the context.

The format for the course will be an mixture of tours, site visits, studio work, lectures and critique. Participants and tutors will live and work on-site; sleeping, meeting and eating on site.

Over the course of the week, participants will work to develop responses to an architectural problem. Significant time will be spent exploring, drawing, and developing an understanding of the context for the project. Responses will be developed in model and graphic form, with an emphasis on analog representation methods. The week will culminate in a formal presentation and critique of the work by the teaching team.
The class will be limited to 20 participants.

This year’s workshop will be held at the Woodstock Farm House and Barn by Rick Joy Architects in Woodstock, Vermont. The project was select by Architectural Record for its 2010 Record Houses Issue, and has been featured in numerous other publications.

The house is sited at the base of a hill next to a spring-fed pond which forms the center of family activity on the 210-acre homestead. Woodstock displays so much of what makes this part of New England unique, with the rolling hills and ever-changing forest backdrop serving as a constant marker of place and time. This will be our laboratory and canvas for the workshop.

Option A – $3690 USD
Participants stay with tutors at Woodstock Farm in co-ed bunk rooms.

Option B – $3100 USD
Participants make their own arrangements to stay at a local inn, and then drive to/ from farm each day. (carpooling from town is encouraged)

Option C – $3100 USD
Participants bring tents to sleep in at Woodstock Farm (camping spaces are limited)

This Fee covers the program tuition, all meals [except lunch on the first and last days for the class], lodging (unless noted in the pricing above), most drawing and modeling materials (a short list of materials that should be brought with you will be provided), lectures, and tours. It does not cover the costs of travel to/ from Woodstock.

Preference will be given to applications received by 5/31/2014.


Scott Lawrence, Program Director