Architecture senior and art donor Sam Tenreiro Theis with her piece "beyond", which will be auctioned off at the AIAS art auction. Isabel Hughes | Mustang News
Architecture senior and art donor Sam Tenreiro Theis with her piece “beyond”, which will be auctioned off at the AIAS art auction. Isabel Hughes | Mustang News
Architecture senior and art donor Sam Tenreiro Theis with her piece “beyond”, which will be auctioned off at the AIAS art auction. Isabel Hughes | Mustang News

The Cal Poly American Institute of Architechture Students (AIAS) chapter will host their fourth annual art auction at iFixit on Monterey Street, May 4 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The event will feature art by Cal Poly professors, alumni, students and local artists.

As an influential component of professional development for architecture students, AIAS serves to provide resources and networking opportunities. The AIAS is a nationwide nonprofit student-run organization devoted to developing leadership, design and service within the community of architecture students, according to their website. At Cal Poly, the resources AIAS provides range from workshops to conferences to lectures by architecture professionals.

The funds raised at the event will go toward providing resources to Cal Poly architecture students in the future, including supporting individuals who will attend architecture conferences.

For AIAS members, the entrance fee will be $5. For non-members, the entrance fee will be $10, and for art donors, there will be no entrance fee. Anyone interested in donating art to the auction can email aias.calpoly@gmail.com.

Non-profit Journeyman International is a sponsor for AIAS and operates out of iFixit, where the AIAS art auction has been hosted for the past three years. The organization designs and constructs sustainable humanitarian facilities around the world. According to AIAS president and architecture senior Alex Siegel, the company’s mission aligns closely with the AIAS mission, which helps develop their partnership.

In past years, many architecture students and professors have donated art to be auctioned off. On average, each AIAS art auction has consisted of approximately 100 art pieces which included, but were not limited to, photography, paintings and sculptures.

“We really just want to help people showcase their art and talent outside of the architecture studio setting,” architecture senior Rodrigo Robles-Gonzalez said.

Since its first trial, the AIAS art auction has proved to be a key event which allows architecture students to enhance their skills through the resources it helps fund. Siegel said there are specific skills that are gained and strengthened through AIAS membership.

“We host lectures and bring lecturers from the surrounding areas, typically the San Francisco Bay Area or Los Angeles, we host workshops, so skill swapping and kind of equipping all of our membership base, as well as the architecture college as a whole, with the skills that they can bring into the workforce as well as into their studios,” Siegel said.

AIAS secretary and architecture sophomore Violeta Smart said being part of AIAS provides access to guest lecturers and workshops while also allowing for other opportunities within the architecture department.

“A lot of times between your year, you’re very close with people because you share studios and you have, like, every class together, so that’s not hard, but it’s usually kind of hard to meet other students like upperclassmen and knowing where you’re heading, especially if you’re a first-year,” Smart said. “It was really helpful to know what second-years were doing and what third-years were doing and follow their process.”

Robles-Gonzalez said AIAS is important not only as a professional avenue, but as a “social facilitator” aiding students in making connections with each other.

AIAS has had a profound impact on many architecture students’ college experiences, according to Siegel.

“It’d be hard to imagine my architecture career without it at this point,” Siegel said.

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