Lima-based architect and UFI Fellow Alexia Leon hosted a conversation with her research partner, Los Angeles-based architect Christian Stayner. Leon and Stayner discussed their ongoing project about the urban desert (developed in collaboration with curator Jorge Villacorta), critically considering the role of the architect in shaping the future development of arid lands. They also presented their observations on the points of intersection between Lima and Los Angeles, both places that have sprung up from the desert. These subjects took them into issues of urban settlement, population density, social transformation, and the use of history by architects and urban planners.
The MAK Urban Future Initiative (UFI) ran from 2008-10 at the Fitzpatrick-Leland House and was dedicated to creating meaningful cross-cultural exchange about the challenges confronting cities worldwide.