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Architecture students primarily learn from their idols'

Prof. Peter Cheret and Prof. Markus Allmann

Review | Manuel Aires Mateus in Venedig

2019 November Talks at the University of Stuttgart

For the 14th time, the annual "November Talks" lecture series sponsored by the non-profit Sto Foundation brought renowned international architects to the University of Stuttgart. On four evenings, the lower lecture hall of the university turned into a stage for famous speakers, who discussed their views on relevant contemporary architecture topics

In November 2019, these speakers were the five successful female architects Luise Kister, Francine Houben, Alexandra Hagen, Barbara Vogt and Alison Brooks. For the first time, they were welcomed by Prof. Markus Allmann, the director of the Institute for Spatial Conception and Design Basics at the Faculty for Architecture and Urban Design. Allmann took over the lecture series from his predecessor Prof. Peter Cheret.

Until the summer semester, Cheret had been a professor at the Institute for Building Construction and Design at the University of Stuttgart. Since the Sto Foundation was founded in 2005, he has served as its foundation council member for architecture. Under his leadership, the "November Talks" became a highly successful lecture series with events held at six European universities – Stuttgart, Paris, Prague, London, Venice and Graz.

His successor, Prof. Markus Allmann, has worked at the University of Stuttgart since 2006. He has been part of the "November Talks" from the beginning, knows the issues and has now also taken on the responsibility of developing the series further.

"The first order of business in the case of such a popular lecture series is to ensure that it continues to be successful. The format has been so successful because we have been able to completely rely on the stars – the outstanding architects that introduced their work. And we have fared very well with this concept and we want to make sure it stays that way", explains Allmann, who points to the "great importance" of the series, especially for the university's students.

"Architecture students primarily learn from their idols. All of the guest lecturers we have invited represent a strong, unique viewpoint in the world of architecture. That is extremely important for our students. In addition, the works of these architects are very well known but not the people who designed them. It is incredibly exciting for the students to get to know the biographies of these famous architects", Allmann believes.

He will be able to count on the continued involvement of the Sto Foundation in the November Talks. "That is really important and necessary, because this type of event is something very special. We have to create a space for it and make the necessary means available that are generally lacking at many universities", said the departing Professor Peter Cheret.

Video of the interview

Prof. Peter Cheret and Prof. Markus Allmann are interviewed about the history and significance of the architecture lecture series.

Watch the video on our YouTube channel