Current Ph.D. students

Meltem Al

(supervisor: Prof. Ipek Tureli)

Meltem Al is a Ph.D. student in the School of Architecture at McGill University since 2015 under the supervision of Prof. Ipek Tureli. She holds a Master of Arts Degree in Architecture from University of California, Los Angeles supported by the Fulbright Scholarship 2013-2015. Al received her M.Arch. degree in 2013 and B.Arch. degree in 2010 from Middle East Technical University in Turkey. Between 2011 and 2013, she worked at the same university as a research assistant. She is interested in the issues of ethics, social agency, activism, and praxis in architecture and the responsibility of architecture/architect in the reproduction of the built world. Her Ph.D. research explores the production of space in Middle Eastern cities that have been subjected to new modes of urbanization with the rise of neoliberalism and its marriage with political Islam since the second half of the 20th century. She investigates how architecture is instrumentalized as an agent of “transformation” in the neoliberal era––despite architecture’s being extraneous to this transformation scenario.

Elijah Borrero

(supervisor: Prof. David Theodore)

Elijah Borrero is a first year PhD student in the School of Architecture at McGill University. He studies post-World War Two architecture, focusing on the relationship between architectural thought, military production and technological innovation. His dissertation, titled “Cold War Architectures: Four US Military Building Campaigns in the 1950s”, examines the collaborative efforts of architects, engineers and US military personnel at the start of the Cold War and seeks to reveal how and why progressive architectural thought was militarized.

Borrero received his bachelor in mathematics from SUNY Albany, professional master of architecture from Parsons, and post-professional master of architecture in history and theory from McGill. He is a member of the Laboratoire d'étude de l'architecture potentielle (L.E.A.P).

Elisabeth Bouchard

(supervisor: Prof. Aaron Sprecher)

Elisabeth Bouchard's Ph.D. studies the architectural expression of research stations built in the Canadian Arctic with the objective of informing design methods capable of increasing the performative qualities of Arctic architecture. Her research is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). She received a professional Master of Architecture from Université de Montréal in 2005 and a Bachelor of Architecture from Université Laval in 2003. Elisabeth is also a practicing architect, member of the Ordre des architectes du Québec. She has worked for award-winning architecture firms on internationally acclaimed public buildings in Montreal, Vancouver and San Francisco.

Brian W. Brush

(supervisor: Prof. Michael Jemtrud)

Brian W. Brush is a Ph.D. student investigating media architecture. The working title of his dissertation, supervised by Prof. Michael Jemtrud, is “Media Architecture and its Discontents: mapping architecture’s emerging socio-technological frontier.” He is a 2014 recipient of the McGill Engineering Doctoral Award (MEDA) as well as a 2014-2015 Fulbright Scholarship.  Brian received a B.A. in Environmental Design from Montana State University and an M.Arch and M.S. in Urban Planning from the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture Planning and Preservation (GSAPP). Prior to studying at McGill, Brian was a researcher at the Columbia University Spatial Information Design Lab and was an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Architecture at Columbia teaching in the Visual Studies curriculum for five years. He is a practicing public artist in the US and is currently a studio instructor at the School of Design Strategies: Cities, Services, Ecosystems at Parsons The New School as well as a design researcher at the Facility for Architectural Research in Media and Mediation (FARMM) at McGill.

Maria Valentina Davila

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Maria Valentina is a Ph.D. student at McGill University School of Architecture under the supervision of Prof. Annmarie Adams. She has been deeply interested in social housing since studying architecture in Venezuela. Valentina spent fourteen months reviewing housing statistics and typologies to understand the origin and characteristics of the prevailing housing shortage in Latin America. In 2007, she successfully defended her thesis: "Industrialization in the Production of Low-Cost Housing in Venezuela". Later, in Madrid’s Technical University, she completed two Master degrees: One in Housing Development and another in Quality in the Construction Process. In 2011, a Master of Interior Architecture allowed her to continue research on the meaning of home. By this time, she was exploring the human dialect established in the appropriation of private interior space through the use of decorative elements. In 2014, Valentina completed the post-proffesional M. Arch (History and Theory option) at McGill University.

Maria Patricia Farfan

(supervisor: Prof. Ricardo Castro)

Maria Patricia Farfan is a Ph.D. student at McGill University. Her research investigates the Nasa community. The Nasa is an indigenous community that occupies the Central Andean mountain range in the southern region of Colombia. This dissertation focuses on the Nasa understanding of territory and its relationship with their spiritual beliefs. Throughout this analysis, she attempts to provide a new interpretation of place that the defense and protection of the land occupy in the Nasa beliefs, particularly as appear in the concept of the Nasa Yat and the Tull, or sacred places. The Nasa have been able to keep their traditional practices alive in singular manners. Their conception of the connection between territory, architecture, and land constitute a unity, which occupies a central role in their lives. The analysis of such a relationship falls within current discussions in the theoretical fields of mythology and architecture. Patricia received a Bachelor of Architecture from Piloto de Colombia University, and a post-professional Master of Architecture in the former Minimum Cost Housing option at McGill University.

Aniel Guxholli

(supervisor: Prof. Martin Bressani)

Aniel pursued his studies in architecture and humanities in Venice, Brussels and Montreal, before coming to McGill in 2013 to continue his PhD in architectural history under the supervision of Prof. Martin Bressani. He received his B.Arch. and M.Arch. degrees at the Venice School of Architecture (Iuav), where he attended Francesco dal Co’s contemporary history course and wrote his final thesis on the north-east extension of the Léopold Quarter in Brussels under the supervision of G. Zucconi. He was a visiting student at the faculties of architecture of Université de Montréal and UCL-St. Luc in Brussels, and attended lectures at the Ca’ Foscari faculty of letters and linguistics and at the School of Social Sciences and Humanities of Venice International University. Aniel decided to pursue his long interest in Belgium and Art Nouveau architecture in his current doctoral research at McGill, focusing on the problem of Victor Horta’s sources and, as a secondary question, its urban diffusion through the endeavours of minor architects in Brussels.

Susane Havelka

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

A doctoral candidate at McGill University, Susane investigates Inuit self-built houses and building systems in the Eastern Arctic. Her research integrates the study of cultural landscapes and the use of space by examining how Inuit construct, experience and inhabit their dwellings. By documenting and analyzing specific spatial traditions and constructions, in both government-built settlements and Inuit-built outpost camps, Susane posits Inuit as active spatial agents. Susane earned a Master of Architecture degree at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation and a Bachelor of Science in Art and Design at MIT. While at Columbia, she won the Tadao Ando Fellowship, a study/travel award for Japan. Susane is also an educational councillor for MIT and a member of the Energy, Environment and Sustainability Network. She was a Research Assistant for the GRIF (interested in integrated processes and innovation for the built environment) at the Université de Montréal. Susane has practiced as an architect in New York, Berlin, Prague and Montreal.

Utku Karakaya

(supervisor: Prof. Ipek Tureli)

Utku Karakaya is a Ph.D. student in the School of Architecture at McGill University since 2015 under the supervision of Prof. Ipek Tureli. He received his M.Arch. degree in 2014 and B. Arch. degree in 2011, both from METU. Between 2011 and 2014, he entered architectural competitions and received awards. His Ph.D. research investigates the socio-political role of public spaces for the inception and persistence of political mobilization through urban social movements. He is particularly interested in the social re-production of space through activities performed collectively for the spatial manifestation of political claims.

Sonya Kohut

(supervisor: Prof. Alberto Pérez-Gómez)

Sonya Kohut’s dissertation investigates architectural ideas in 16th century England as exemplified by John Dee’s preface to Euclid, examining their relation to magical practices, religion, natural philosophy, and the Vitruvian tradition. Sonya received a Bachelor of Environmental Design degree from the University of Manitoba (2005), and a Masters of Science in Architecture from the Technical University of Delft (2009). After practicing in Vancouver, she completed a post-profesional M. Arch. (History and Theory option) in 2013 at McGill. She has been awarded a Schulich Graduate Fellowship (2012-13) and is the recipient of a Joseph Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship.

Ayca Koseoglu

(supervisor: Prof. Ipek Tureli)

Ayca Koseoglu is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Architecture at McGill University under the supervision of Prof. Ipek Tureli. She holds an M.A. degree in the History of Architecture and a B.Arch. degree in Architecture both from Middle East Technical University, Ankara. Her dissertation, entitled “Urban Design and Civil Protest: Transformation of Beyazit and Taksim Squares in Istanbul”, focuses on how these squares were physically transformed in response to civil protests and in relation to each other’s historic and urban role.  She is particularly interested in the agency of architectural/urban space in manifesting socio-political claims. She received a Canadian Centre for Architecture Collection Research Grant in 2014.

Olivier Jacques

(supervisor: Prof. Martin Bressani)

Title: The Voids of Speculation – The Uncanny Ruins of Failed Urbanism

This research is situated in the field of urban and sociological aesthetics, exploring the eerie urban condition of ghost-cities in Vietnam, more specifically cases of vacant new urban areas around Hanoi, built mostly under speculative impulses, often lingering unfinished and uninhabited for a prolonged period of economic uncertainty. This research extends the theoretical background of my Masters thesis in architecture entitled "Metropolitan Vertigoes: inquiries on situations of imbalance in modern metropolises” (with honors). A few essays were co-authored in various architecture periodicals (Log, Arch+ and Le Visiteur), including a text in J. Mayer H.’s monograph on Metropol Parasol in Seville (2011).

More recently, I was also part of the Hanoi Youth & Public Space project, an example of collaborative research studies, with grassroots academic works brought up to upper levels of administration in Vietnam, with policy advocacies from local NGO HealthBridge. I designed the whole website for that project, as a way to make the academic work more accessible. See

Brighita Lungu

(supervisor: Prof. Alberto Pérez-Gómez)

During her undergraduate years, Brighita experimented extensively with using multimedia and visual projections to create alternative spatial experiences. This passion led her to pursue her current Ph.D. dissertation titled “The architecture of cinematic experience: a phenomenological account of poetic spaces in film”.

Her thesis explores the architectural qualities of cinematic space. More specifically, she argues that architectural practice and architectural representation should move beyond seeing film as simply a source of inspiration or a collection of technical conventions ready to be appropriated. Instead, film should be understood as the epitome of spatial experience, considering that, along with specific technical methods (e.g., montage, miss-en-cadre, camera movement, etc.) it combines critical elements of embodied perception (e.g., stories, emotions, memories, imagination, etc.) to create a compelling and meaningful encounter.

Brighita completed a professional degree in architecture at G.M. Cantacuzino School of Architecture in Romania (2010), after which she obtained a M.Arch. in Cultural Mediations & Technology from McGill University (2011).

Anca Matyiku

(supervisor: Prof. Alberto Pérez-Gómez)

Anca’s doctoral research explores how fiction and literary constructs play a productive role in the architectural imagination, particularly in the design of architectural atmospheres and events.  The dissertation draws from architectural depictions within the literature of Polish author Bruno Schulz who was educated as an architect and taught arts and crafts in his native town of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire.  Anca also sustains a research-creation practice through which she explores how fiction, myth, and material temperaments corroborate design intentions.  Her research has been part of several conferences and publications, and it has been previously presented in Athens, Montreal, Winnipeg, Toronto, Hong Kong, and at the Architecture Biennale in Venice.  Anca holds a Bachelor of Architectural Studies from University of Waterloo and a Masters of Architecture from University of Manitoba.

Yildiz Ipek Mehmetoglu

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Yildiz Ipek Mehmetoglu is a Ph.D. student at McGill University School of Architecture since 2014 under the supervision of Prof. Annmarie Adams. She received her M.A. degree in History of Architecture Program in 2014, and her B.Arch. degree in Architecture in 2012, both from METU, Ankara, Turkey. In 2010-2011 she studied at ENSA Paris-Belleville for one year as an exchange student. Between 2012-2014, she worked as teaching and research assistant at METU Department of Architecture. Her Ph.D. research investigates the relationship between art, architecture, everyday life, space and gender in early twentieth century. She is particularly interested in the issues of travel, domesticity and nature in the formation of identity. She is the 2015 recipient of the Fred and Betty Price Research Award.

Magdalena Milosz

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Magdalena Miłosz is a doctoral student at McGill University under the supervision of Prof. Annmarie Adams. Her research focuses on the historical uses of architecture in the Canadian government’s attempts to assimilate Indigenous peoples in the context of the nation-building project, with a particular emphasis on gender and politics. Her work is supported by a Doctoral Fellowship from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and a Schulich Graduate Fellowship from McGill.

Originally from Warsaw, Poland, Magda lived in Germany as a child and grew up in Toronto. She holds a Bachelor of Architectural Studies (Honours), a Graduate Diploma in Cognitive Science, and a Master of Architecture from the University of Waterloo. As an intern architect, she has worked on a variety of institutional and residential projects in Ontario. She was the winner of the 2015 C New Critics Competition, as well as receiving a mention in the MAQ Young Critic in Architecture Competition in 2016. Magda’s writing on art and architecture has appeared in print and online.

Gonzalo Muñoz

(supervisor: Prof. Ricardo Castro)

Gonzalo is a Ph.D. student at McGill University School of Architecture under the supervision of Prof. Ricardo L. Castro. He holds a M.Arch. degree from the University of Chile (2006) and a post-professional M.Arch. (History and Theory option) from McGill University (2012). Since 2005 he has studied the influence of images on the spread and understanding of architecture in architectural publications. His doctoral research topic is related to the current eruption of virtual reality and the dominance of visual media. His aim has been focused on the role that panoramas from the late eighteenth century have had on architectural representation as proto virtual media of distant places. He is currently the recipient of Becas Chile Doctoral Scholarship from the Chilean government.

Dijana Omeragikj Apostolski

(supervisor: Prof. Alberto Pérez-Gómez)

Dijana, an architect and a doctoral candidate at McGill University, earned a post-professional Master of Architecture degree (History and Theory option) at McGill University, a Master of Arts degree in Aesthetics in Philosophy and a professional architectural degree at Ss.Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje, Macedonia. Her doctoral research is focused on the period of the Renaissance and Michelangelo Buonarroti. She is investigating his un-built architectural designs, his drawings, seeking to extend the understanding of the artist’s discourse and its position within the context of the period. Her research integrates historical research, hermeneutics, and a slightly converted intellectual-historical reading into an architectural examination of the master’s drawings. Before coming to Montreal, she worked in academia, as a research and teaching assistant, and practiced architecture in Skopje, Istanbul, and Dubai. At McGill, she has been awarded the Schulich Graduate Fellowship and the McGill Engineering International Doctoral Award.

Gina Page

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Gina Page’s doctoral studies focus on the complex interactions between people, processes and place that create the hospital’s ever-evolving shape. Her work moves beyond the classic hospital architectural history that focuses on medical and engineering advancements as the primary drivers of change, and instead, focuses on the dynamics of those that live and work in hospital spaces. By focusing on the care relationships between patients, family members, and medical professionals, the shaping of the patient room, nursing unit and larger hospital massing can be viewed through an alternative lens.

Gina holds a specialized addictions counseling, bachelor of health science with great distinction from the University of Lethbridge. In her early career, she worked in outpatient care settings as an addiction and mental health clinician in both Alberta and Ontario. Her interest in the role architecture could play in an individual’s healing process; lead her to complete a professional master of architecture from the University of Toronto. In transitioning from academia to the field of architecture, she worked as Stephen Verderber’s research assistant until becoming North York General Hospital’s (NYGH) clinical facility designer. For NYGH, Gina lead the redevelopment of the emergency department, the Phillips House (a new community-based child and adolescent mental health facility) and worked to create a collaborative relationship with the University of Toronto’s Daniels Faculty of Architecture, Landscape and Urban Design. Over the years, Gina has been supervised and mentored by Brigitte Shim, whose introduction to the work of Annmarie Adams shifted her thinking on the methods used to understand care environments. 

Véronique Proteau

(supervisor: Prof. Martin Bressani)

Véronique Proteau is an OAQ-registered architect and a Ph.D. candidate at McGill University’s School of Architecture under the supervision of Prof. Martin Bressani. She initially earned a B.Sc. in architecture (2003) and M.Arch. (2005) at Université Laval, Quebec City, which included a 6-month stint at the Kunstakademiets Arkitektskole, Copenhagen (2003). Ensuing a well-rounded, decade-long professional experience working for architectural firms in Quebec City, Montreal and Tokyo on major residential, healthcare, institutional and cultural projects, Véronique currently explores the potential of storytelling as a conceptual tool in her practical and theoretical research endeavours. Following a transmedial approach to narrative theory, her doctoral dissertation examines more specifically the workings of narrative strategies in the architectural design of contemporary museums. Véronique currently holds a Joseph Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship as well as a CFUW Dr. Alice E. Wilson award.

Aaron Richmond

(supervisor: Prof. David Theodore)

Aaron Richmond’s research addresses the spatial metaphors underpinning Modern art and architecture. His doctoral project looks at the conceptualization of space in both its psychological and socio-political dimensions, focusing on the critical reception of German aesthetics within the French periodical L’Esprit nouveau from 1920 to 1925.

Prior to studying at McGill, Aaron received a BA from the University of King’s College, an MPHIL from the University of Cambridge, and an MFA from the Hoffberger School at the Maryland Institute College of Art. He is the recipient of awards that include, most recently, the 2016 Robert Motherwell Fellowship and the 2015 Milton and Sally Avery Fellowship, both awarded through the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, MA.  In 2017/2018, he is a P. Lantz Artist in Residence in the Faculty of Education at McGill University. 

Tanya Southcott

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Tanya Southcott is a PhD student in the School of Architecture under the supervision of Prof. Annmarie Adams.  Her dissertation, entitled: “Memory Makers: Women, Photography, and Demolition in Montreal, 1960-1985”, explores architectural photography and the intersection between demolition and memory in the context of Montreal following the Second World War.  Her research has been awarded a Schulich Graduate Fellowship and an FRQ-SC Doctoral Scholarship, and is currently supported by a SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship.

Tanya holds a post-professional Master of Architecture from McGill University, a certificate in Heritage Conservation Planning from the University of Victoria, and a Bachelor of Environmental Studies and Master of Architecture from the University of Waterloo. She is an associate of the Architectural Institute of British Columbia and has worked in both architectural and heritage consulting offices across Canada and the United Kingdom, as well as on archaeological excavations in Turkey.

Julia Tischer

(supervisor: Prof. Annmarie Adams)

Julia Tischer is interested in the relationship between architectural intention and spatial production where gender, class and ethnicity are central categories of analysis. Her dissertation studies the changing architectural symbolism of a single architectural typology, German above-ground bunkers (1940-1960). Following current discussions of cultural landscapes, gendered spaces and places of memory, she approaches bunker architecture as fascist symbols of power, urban landmarks, sites of difficult memories and revenge, and as home. Her current work comes from a larger interest in ordinary spaces, privileging spatial interpretations and social expressions of underrepresented groups, and thus contributing to architectural histories of inclusion. Her research has been funded by a Margaret Gillett Graduate Research Award (McGill University) a Power Corporation Award (CCA), and more recently a FQRSC (Le Fonds de recherche du Québec) Doctoral Award and TD Bank Group-CCA Collection Research Grant. Prior to this degree, she earned a post-professional Master of Architecture in Minimum Cost Housing from McGill University in 2009. Trained as an architect, she participated in the design of several award-winning low cost housing projects in Colombia. Her dissertation supervisor is Prof. Annamarie Adams.

Dustin Valen

(supervisor: Prof. Robert Mellin)

Dustin’s doctoral research focuses on the cultural history of landscape design. His interests include the social and political history of landscape in pre-confederation Newfoundland, mid-century architectural modernism in Canada, and nineteenth century scientific horticulture. His dissertation explores how a series of creative practices helped educate a modern landscape-vision in Newfoundland, and how its resulting landscapes were situated at the intersection of elite and working-class culture. He is the current holder of a Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship. Originally from Vancouver Island, Dustin holds an M.Arch degree from Dalhousie University and a post-professional degree from the University of Toronto. As an Intern Architect, Dustin has worked in architectural offices across Canada and in Australia. His recent writing has appeared in RACAR and the JSSAC.

Benjamin Wareing

(supervisor: Prof. Michael Jemtrud)

Ben Wareing is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Architecture at McGill University, under the supervision of Prof. Michael Jemtrud. Ben completed his professional degree in Architecture from Victoria University of Wellington. He has worked for several years in architecture firms in New Zealand and Montreal and completed a post-professional Master of Architecture degree in Urban Design and Housing at McGill in 2014. The working title of Ben’s dissertation project is ‘The Plinth of the Pillars: Reframing Cultural Value in Sustainable Design’. This research focuses on the architectural implications of reframing cultural value as foundational to a sustainable society.



Donate to the school: