Witold Rybczynski & Moshe Safdie
PennDesign is pleased to announce that architectural critic and PennDesign Meyerson Professor of Urbanism Witold Rybczynski will join architect, urban planner, educator, theorist, and author Moshe Safdie in conversation about Safdie's body of work and philosophy as part of the Spring 2012 Lecture Series.
This event is free and open to the public. PennDesign is a registered provider of continuing education programming for the American Institute of Architects. Registration strongly encouraged.
Moshe Safdie graduated from McGill University, with a degree in architecture, in 1961. After apprenticing with Louis Kahn in Philadelphia, he returned to Montreal to oversee the master plan for Expo '67. In 1964, he established his own firm to undertake Habitat '67, an adaptation of his McGill thesis. Habitat '67, which pioneered the design and implementation of three-dimensional, prefabricated units for living, was a central feature of Expo '67 and an important development in architectural history. He was awarded the 1967 Construction Man of the Year Award from the Engineering News Record and the Massey Medal for Architecture in Canada for Habitat '67. In 1970, Safdie opened a branch office in Jerusalem, starting an involvement with the rebuilding of that city that eventually included the Yitzhak Rabin Center, the Holocaust History Museum at Yad Vashem and a large mixed-use development in Mamilla. In 1978, after teaching at McGill, Ben Gurion, and Yale universities, Safdie moved his main office to Boston and became director of the Urban Design Program at Harvard University's Graduate School of Design, until 1984. From 1984 to 1989, he was the Ian Woodner Professor of Architecture and Urban Design at Harvard.
Since the early 1990s, Safdie, a citizen of Canada, Israel, and the United States, has focused on his architectural practice, Safdie Architects, which is based in Boston and has branches in Toronto, Jerusalem, and Singapore. In that time, Safdie has designed six of Canada's principal public institutions as well as many other notable projects around the world, including the Salt Lake City Main Public Library, the Khalsa Heritage Centre in India, the Marina Bay Sands integrated resort in Singapore, the United States Institute of Peace headquarters in Washington, DC, the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas.
Witold Rybczynski is the Meyerson Professor of Urbanism at the University of Pennsylvania. He has written over fifteen books and 300 articles on architecture and urbanism for such publications as The New York Times, The Atlantic, The New Yorker and Slate, and is the author of the critically acclaimed Home and the A Clearing in the Distance, a biography of Frederick Law Olmsted, for which he was awarded the J. Anthony Lukas Prize. He is the recipient of the National Building Museum's 2007 Vincent Scully Prize.