The Charles Gwathmey Professorship was established in the fall by fashion designer Ralph Lauren and his wife, Ricky Lauren, as a tribute to the late internationally renowned architect, who died Aug. 3, 2009. A 1962 graduate of the School of Architecture, Gwathmey recently restored and expanded the landmark Art + Architecture Building, now renamed Paul Rudolph Hall, and designed its adjoining Robert B. Haas Family Arts Library and Jeffrey H. Loria Center for the History of Art.
Peter D. Eisenman, the inaugural Charles Gwathmey Professor in Practice, is an internationally renowned architect and educator whose recent projects include the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin, a stadium for the NFL Arizona Cardinals and the six-building City of Culture of Galicia in Santiago de Compostela, Spain.
Eisenman is the principal of the New York-based Eisenman Architects, which since its founding in 1980 has designed projects ranging from large-scale housing and urban design to facilities for educational institutions and private houses. Many of these have won major architectural awards.
Also renowned as an architectural theorist, Eisenman founded the Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies in 1967 and served as its director until 1982. In 1969, through an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, he became associated with a group of emerging architects who were dubbed "the New York Five," which, in addition to Eisenman, included Charles Gwathmey, Michael Graves, Richard Meier and John Hejduk. By the late 1970s, he was considered a leader in the Post Modern movement in architecture. He studied and made formal use of concepts from other fields, including linguistics, philosophy and mathematics, in his architectural designs.
Eisenman began teaching at Yale in the 1970s, and most recently served as the Louis I. Kahn Professor of Architecture. His books include "Code X: The City of Culture of Galicia," "Eisenman: Inside Out, Selected Writings, 1963-1988," "Blurred Zones: Investigations of the Interstitial, Eisenman Architects, 1988-1998," and "Written Into the Void, Selected Writings, 1990-2004."
His five-year appointment runs through June 30, 2014.