Graduate Architecture

Ali Rahim

Professor of Architecture
Director of the MSD-AAD Program


B.S. Arch., University of Michigan
M.Arch. with Design Honors, Columbia University

Ali Rahim is (Full) Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, where he directs the Advanced Architectural Design Program. He is also Director of CAP in SoHo, New York City. Mr. Rahim has served as the Studio Zaha Hadid Visiting Professor at the University of Applied Arts (die Angewandte) in Vienna, as the Louis I. Kahn Visiting Professor at Yale University, and as a Visiting Architecture Professor at Harvard University.

Mr. Rahim's books include Catalytic Formations: Architecture and Digital Design (20012), published by the China Building Press, Beijing; Catalytic Formations: Architecture and Digital Design (2006), published by Routledge, London; Turbulence (2011), published by Norten and Company, New York; and three edited issues of Architectural Design, Elegance (2007), co-edited with Hina Jamelle, Contemporary Techniques in Architecture (2002), and Contemporary Processes in Architecture (2000). He has a new book on design research titled Intensity, which is to be published in 2014.

Mr. Rahim has delivered public lectures on his work about his design research globally -- at Harvard University, Yale University, Cornell University, UPenn, and SCI Arc in the US, and at the Universities of Toronto, Calgary, and British Columbia in Canada. In addition, he has lectured at the Architectural Association and Bartlett in London, TU Delft, Netherlands, Universitat Catalunya, Barcelona, Innsbruck, Austria, and University of Thessaloniki, Greece, in Europe and at American University Sharjah, UAE, Tokyo University, Hong Kong University and Tsinghua University, Beijing, in Asia, to name a few.

CAP was founded in 1999 and, since then, has established an award-winning profile in futuristic work using digital techniques for the design and manufacturing of architecture. Their portfolio includes a wide range and scale of work -- from furniture to master plans. Their research projects have been commissioned by Dupont, ARUP, Z-Corporation, ABT Manufacturing, and the Wharton Business School, to name a few. The most unique aspect of their practice is that they are able to apply their research collaborations directly in their practice, making their research useful and innovative for the discipline. This can be seen in their project designs commissioned by significant global brands such as Tarkan, Reebok, the Viceroy Hotel, Samsung, Lutron, and the Museum of Modern Art (New York). The resulting projects have been exhibited extensively, at such locations as the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Artists Space (New York), the London, Beijing, and Shanghai Biennales, Serpentine Gallery (London), and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.

In addition, Rahim's projects have been published extensively, including in the New York TimesWashington PostInternational Herald TribuneLondon Standard, the National Newspaper of Abu Dhabi, the Nikkei Newspaper (Tokyo), and the Mainichi Shimbun.  Journals include Yale Constructs, Architectural Record, Domus (Milan), Arkitektin (Denmark), A+U (Tokyo), and Space (Korea). He was awarded the Architecture Record Product of the Month (2007) for the fixture titled "Opale" for Ivalo as well as the Outstanding Award for FEIDAD 2006 (Far Eastern Digital Architecture Design). His work was also selected for Phaidon Presses 10x10x2 by "10 internationally prominent critics, architects and curators" (2005), and CAP won the prestigious Architectural Design Vanguard Award (2004), as one of eleven practices worldwide "building the future of architecture."

Ali Rahim: What is architecture?