October 13, 2006

Native American Heritage Month program: Natural design expert to speak on campus Nov. 13

by Sun Min

CARBONDALE, Ill. – In honor of Native American Heritage Month, a world-renowned Native American architect will visit Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Douglas J. Cardinal, designer of Smithsonian's Museum of the American Indian, will meet with School of Architecture students and faculty at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 13 in room 124 of the Parkinson Laboratory. That evening, the University Museum will host a public reception at 8 p.m.

"Cardinal's pioneering work has enhanced many museums, and we are grateful for his contributions," said Dona R. Bachman, director of the University Museum.

Cardinal has an international reputation for excellence in natural design. He created an indigenous Canadian style of architecture with his curvilinear (formed or characterized by curves) and organic buildings. Although his most significant commission was the Canadian Museum of Civilization, in Hull, Quebec, Cardinal established an early reputation in Western Canada with his design of St. Mary's Church in Red Deer, the Grand Prairie Regional College, the Edmonton Space and Science Center, the Government Services Center in Ponoka, St. Albert's place and several other buildings.

"I'm excited to meet with him because his architecture is very spiritual and emotional," said Christy J. Poggas, assistant professor in the School of Architecture. Cardinal believes the design of each building is a spiritual act that demands from all those participating in it the best of their endeavors.

SIUC's School of Architecture, part of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts, SIUC's Native American Heritage Month Committee and the fine arts activity fee are sponsoring Cardinal's visit.

Coordinating and expanding major cultural outreach programs are among the goals of Southern at 150: Building Excellence Through Commitment, the blueprint for the development of the University by the time it celebrates its 150th anniversary in 2019.