2018 March

Dana speaks at the CMUThink Pittsburgh event themed around Greening the Urban Environment. This Alumni Association University event introduces CMU’s innovative research and technology that could lead to healthier cities.

2018 March

Epiphyte Lab has been recognized as the Next Progressive design practice by ARCHITECT, The Journal of American Institute of Architects. Learn more about Epiphyte Lab’s design work in the interview with Dana.

2018 March

Dana presents Senyai: Vaulted Acoustics project at the Building Behaviors panel, 106th Annual Meeting ACSA, Denver, CO.


| Vertical Design Studio | Fall 2014 |

| CMU School of Architecture | Instructor: Dana Cupkova |

As human impact on the world’s biosphere reaches critical levels, we should recognize and accept the fact that the concept of “naturalness” has radically transformed. Nature is not an untamed plane of reference where forces re-circulate in a balanced and harmonious way; in the words of Slavoj Zizek, nature is crazy, catastrophic and brutal. Acceptance of this will help us avoid the contemporary cultural pitfall promoted by the binary thinking of “ecologic ideology”. At the same time it will liberate a much more radical attitude towards the development of new models of transformation of the environment, new design practices for the reconfiguration of the city, and the role of architecture in this process. This studio investigates the emergent condition of another nature, or a new naturalness created by hybridized organic building surfaces and synthetic infrastructures, as they promote and condition urban biodiversity. Our goal is to develop new housing prototypes for the urban environment, i.e. a “framed” ecology where beautification, leisure, and biological life share space, time and resources.

| Student: Nana Choi |