Mayfield Lecture to feature Anne Marie Duvall Decker

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The Fairmont State University Architecture program will present the Mayfield Lecture 2019 featuring Anne Marie Duvall Decker at 7 p.m. on October 22.

The event will begin with a reception at 6 p.m. in the lobby of the Engineering Technology Building, followed by the lecture at 7 p.m. in MMA in the library. The lecture topic is “Public Work—Architecture as an Instrument.” The event is presented in partnership with the American Institute of Architects West Virginia and is supported by the West Virginia Foundation for Architecture.

The Mayfield Lecture, named for Jeffrey Mayfield, Fairmont State alumnus and architecture professor, honors the “spirit and dedication” that Mayfield exhibited toward the exploration, craft and profession of architecture.

The mission of the Mayfield Lecture is to encourage a sense of community between architectural education, the profession and the public by influencing the educational, economic and cultural well-being of our region through the dissemination of architectural knowledge.

Decker, FAIA, is a founding principal of Duvall Decker Architects, located in Jackson, Mississippi. Duvall Decker is an expanded design practice whose work includes architectural design, community planning, real estate development and facility maintenance.

“Each new or renovated building changes its community. These interventions have consequences in the lives of hundreds, maybe thousands of people who encounter them,” Decker said. “Architecture can promote cultural growth by becoming alive in our experience, placing us between comfort and challenge, the known and the curious. Architecture is not simply a thing, but a transaction between us and our environment. In this way, architecture behaves as instrument. It can expand our senses, capacity and understanding of who we are and who we want to be.”

Architects face the challenges of program, budget and schedule in every project, but the most important challenge is to find the public value of each project, no matter the type, outside of its lot lines, Decker says. She will be touching more about this subject during the presentation.

The work of Duvall Decker Architects explores hopeful proposition in the work of an expanded practice that includes architectural design, community planning, real estate development, and building care. They see this group of endeavors as an integration of creative work to make and maintain meaningful public environments.

The firm’s work and approach has been highlighted in publications such as The New York Times, dwell, ARCHITECT Magazine, and the Journal of Architectural Education. In 2017, the Architectural League of New York selected Duvall Decker as one of its Emerging Voices. Anne Marie is often invited to share the firm’s work and her experience as a lecturer, critic, teacher and design juror, recently serving on the jury for the 2018 AIA Institute Honor Awards for Architecture.