Texas Society of Architects returned to Fort Worth for its 84th Annual Conference & Design Expo on November 2–4, welcoming nearly 2,000 architects, designers, exhibitors, students, and industry professionals. Centered around the theme of “emerge,” sessions focused on how the profession is embracing change, evolving, and moving forward.
The conference unfolded over the course of three days with a jam-packed schedule full of continuing education sessions, architectural tours, keynote speakers, and networking in the Design Expo (some of that networking even happened with puppies!).
Highlights from the first day included touring local architectural projects, such as TX Whiskey Ranch, Mule Alley & Fort Worth Stockyards, and the Marty Leonard Community Chapel. The conference’s first-ever Student Charrette was held Thursday morning bringing together dozens of students, including high school students, from across the state to engage in mentorship and a design challenge. After the first round of exciting and informative continuing education sessions, the Design Expo opened with a Texas-size welcomed party that included longhorns, can-can dancers, and exploring innovative products from more than 200 exhibitors. The evening closed out with a new LGBTQIA+ happy hour, alumni receptions for the various Texas schools of architecture, and Powered by Pecha Kucha presentations.
Friday began with a series of inspiring keynote presentations starting with Jared Della Valle, FAIA, of Alloy Development, followed by MASS Design Group co-founder Michael Murphy. Continuing education sessions during the day offered engagement on a wide variety of topics, including “Diverse Pathways to Fellowship,” highly-praised “Parkitecture” on the architecture of National Parks, and a presentation on integrated design practice. The state’s newly-licensed architects were honored at the New Architects Convocation, and the day wrapped up with a lively Emerging Professionals Party and President’s Party to celebrate!
The final day of the conference gave way to more engaging sessions and tours, and featured a closing keynote from Billie Tsien, AIA, on her path in the profession. “The keynote by Billie Tsien was engaging and impactful. She was inspiring in an aspirational sense, but also relatable in the way she spoke about her work and career,” said Abby Hiles, AIA.
“This was a very exciting and refreshing conference,” said Desmon Odunusi, AIA. “It was great to convene with like-minded people from the industry and trade ideas about design and providing amazing spaces for Texans and humans in general.”
Thank you to AIA Fort Worth for their hospitality and all who attended, presented, and exhibited, making it a great conference. We’re already looking forward to next year in Houston — see you for #TxA24 on October 3–5, 2024!
See more pictures from the event here: killyphotography.com/txafortworth2023