Week 1 - FRAMEWORK - Taylor Yard
Adrian Duncan Smith
I was born in Beverley, England and raised in Lexington, Kentucky. After receiving a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies from Miami University of Ohio, I made brief forays into the worlds of music journalism and audio engineering. Post-college years were spent playing in bands, and cultivating an interest in fine dining chef work in Washington DC and Baltimore, Maryland. My culinary arc culminated in Los Angeles in 2012, as sous chef at Michelin-starred Patina Restaurant. This position inspired extracurricular research into sustainability, urban agriculture, and food justice, and prompted my return to academia.
Provoked by an enthusiasm for urban life, art, design, politics, history, and social justice, I joined the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at UCLA’s Luskin School in 2012. Currently, I am finishing the spring quarter of my first year, having settled comfortably on the departmental concentration of design and development. This arm of planning allows creative expression and community outreach in equal measure.
The diversity of the SWA student cohort will provide an exceptional opportunity to learn outside the classroom, and to apply urban design theory to practice. This summer, and in my career, I hope to explore design strategies that maximize adaptability, flexibility, cultural appreciation, and spatial justice. I want to work towards the de-privatization of the public sphere, and in my own small way, to help make Los Angeles more functional, more beautiful, and more equitable.