May 13, 2009

Acclaimed educator and designer Dagmar Richter to lead Department of Architecture

Internationally acclaimed educator, designer and author Dagmar Richter of the University of California-Los Angeles will be chair of the Department of Architecture in Cornell's College of Architecture, Art and Planning (AAP), effective July 1. She succeeds interim chair Mark Cruvellier, who will continue teaching at Cornell.

"Dagmar is a colleague of the highest distinction," said Kent Kleinman, the Gale and Ira Drukier Dean of the college. "She brings strong leadership, a cooperative spirit, a great deal of energy and a progressive vision that will ensure the architecture department will remain among the best in the world."

Richter, a professor of architecture and urban design at UCLA since 1989, is a leading figure in contemporary architecture. She has taught and lectured at top architectural programs around the world and held professorships at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design, Rhode Island School of Design, Cooper Union, Columbia University and the Art Academy in Berlin and in Stuttgart. She was educated at the University of Stuttgart, the Royal Art Academy in Copenhagen and the Städel School in Frankfurt, and has practiced and taught throughout Europe and the United States.

"I am thrilled and feel very honored ... and cannot wait to work closely with the students, faculty and the administration," Richter said. "I hope that my international experience as an educator, designer and critic will help to build consensus amongst the faculty and the students to let me lead us all forward into the 21st century."

Richter is the principal of DR_D, a design research practice in Berlin and Los Angeles, known for its inventive design approach and research-oriented experiments. Her work focuses on rethinking methods of architectural design in a global economy and a high-speed cultural forum, produced with rapidly evolving computerized technology. Her design work has garnered numerous prestigious competition prizes and awards, including second prize for the design of the National Library of Denmark in Copenhagen and a first prize for an office-park design for the Shinkenshiku Membrane competition in Japan.

Her work is the subject of two monographs: "XYZ: The Architecture of Dagmar Richter" (Princeton Architectural Press) and "Armed Surfaces: Architecture and Urbanisms 5" (Black Dog Press). Her writings have been published in many publications in Norway, Denmark, Germany, Austria, Japan and the United States. Her work has been exhibited internationally including shows at the Louisiana Art Museum in Copenhagen, the Centre Pompidou in Paris and the Armand Hammer Museum in Los Angeles.

With locations in Ithaca, Rome and New York City, AAP programs educate students to be the leaders in a highly competitive global field of architectural practice and education. Cornell's undergraduate architecture program, the only one in the Ivy League, is ranked first in the nation, while its graduate programs are consistently ranked in the top 10.

Aaron Goldweber is communications director in the College of Architecture, Art and Planning.