Yes, that's Morgan Spurlock about to devour a Big Mac of UNStudio's Mercedes-Benze Museum. Hold the pickles!
The expression “go big or go home” was basically invented for Morgan Spurlock. The documentary filmmaker, perhaps best known for eating nothing but McDonald’s for 30 days in his Oscar-nominated film “Super Size Me,” dives into each of his wildly varied projects with vigor and enthusiasm, interrogating systems that a lot of us take for granted. He’s bringing that sharp eye and immersive spirit to maybe one of the last places you’d expect to find him: Architizer’s A+ Awards jury.
The awards are designed to “break architecture out of its echo chamber,” a task for which Spurlock is uniquely qualified; he smashes echo chambers the way the rest of us crack eggs. If you haven’t seen “Super Size Me” (or if you’re blocking the results from your mind), Spurlock gained nearly 25 pounds in a month by eating around 5,000 calories a day. It took him 14 months to lose all the weight eating a completely vegan diet. However, McDonald’s also discontinued the Super Size option shortly after the film came out, although the company maintained that Spurlock’s documentary had nothing to do with their choice.
He’s interviewed everyone from fellow inmates to Comic-Con attendees to British people; he’s searched for Osama Bin Laden in the aptly-titled “Where In The World Is Osama Bin Laden?” Right now he’s working on a documentary about pop mini-gods One Direction. But what does all this have to do with architecture?
Spurlock working in a coal mine for his TV series “30 Days” via IMDB
Spurlock enters these spaces as an ambassador of sorts. With any luck, many of us will not go to prison, or eat nothing but McDonald’s, or become British. (JUST KIDDING BRITISH PEOPLE I <3 YOU AND ALSO KATE MIDDLETON/ FISH AND CHIPS.) He enters these disparate worlds and investigates them not as an inaccessible expert, but as a smart, interested guy who asks the same questions that you or I might.
Similarly, the point of the A+ Awards is not to hand down verdicts from a bunch of faceless, ivory-tower-dwelling judges, but to engage people in all kinds of fields and ways of life with architecture; it’s something that affects every single person on the planet, even if that’s not immediately clear. So while it’s maybe not quite as shocking to see Morgan Spurlock judge designs as it is to watch him throw up a bunch of Big Macs (et cetera), his ability to translate and to highlight things we might otherwise overlook will prove invaluable to the jury.
The deadline for entry is January 25th, so submit your work now.