Maria Esnaola Cano


M.Arch, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation B.Arch, National Autonomous University of Mexico

María Esnaola is a registered Architect in Spain and Fulbright Scholar holding a Master’s of Science in Advanced Architectural Design and a Master’s of Advanced Architectural Research from The Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation of Columbia University. During this time, her work was recognized with the William Ware Prize, the Lucille Smyser Lowernfish Memorial Prize and the William Kinne Fellows Travelling Prize. Currently, she is teaching Design Studio at USC School of Architecture and has lectured at GSAPP (New York) and AAU (San Francisco) before. Since 2012 she has been a visiting juror at Columbia University, Pratt Institute, Sci-Arc, LAIAD and UCLA for final studio reviews. María is co-Founder of Knitknot Architects founded in 2013 in New York; an architectural practice based in the use of multi-layered experimental techniques and production processes networked in London, New York and Los Angeles. She has also worked as key Designer for internationally aclaimed architects such as Patxi Mangado or Rojo Fdz-Shaw in Spain for several international awarded projects.

Currently Teaching
  • 302bL
    Architectural Design III
    Architectural Design III
    The integration of architectural design with building systems, both material (structure and enclosure) and experiential (circulation and environment), is the focus of this final core sequence studio. The comprehensive design project requires students to implement all the knowledge and skills previously accumulated, to extend the depth and breadth of their understanding of design issues, and to deal definitively with the interaction of the formal, experiential, regulatory, and technical requirements of architectural design. Projects will provide for structural integrity, for ventilation, heating and cooling (both natural and mechanical), for natural and artificial lighting, and for acoustic amenity. Students must build into their designs life-safety, egress, and accessibility requirements as embodied in model building codes. Developing a portion of each project in detail and extrapolating those tectonics, students will be responsible for integrating program, site and formal analyses, comprehending the ways in which decisions made in each sphere inform the others.
  • 411
    Architectural Technology
    Architectural Technology
    Prerequisite(s): ARCH 313 Technology is presented not as a post-facto application enabling an architectural idea, but as one of many modes of concurrent thinking an architect must develop. This course promotes understanding the logics and details of construction technologies as they contribute to the production of architecture. Both conventions and experimentations in building assemblies will be studied to link technical considerations to design development. Focus on emerging technologies and concerns, along with proven techniques and means, will encourage awareness of all facets of constructional potentials. Students will learn fundamental detailing principles, and implement those principles in order to test through making. Possibilities and limitations of various constructional systems will be explored, with an eye towards seeing assembly systems as the nexus of various kinds of performance.
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