PETER WALDMAN

William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor, Architecture

Education: Princeton University, Master in Fine Arts in Architecture; Princeton University, B.A.


Peter Waldman is rumored to have quarried mica ever since his early childhood explorations of the wilderness of New York City more than half a century ago. He studied architecture from 1961-69, first at Princeton University, and later as a Peace Corps volunteer in Arequipa, Peru. He served his apprenticeship in the studios of Richard Meier briefly and more substantially with Michael Graves. Since the 1970s, he has been an architect and educator teaching first at Princeton, then at Rice University and currently at the University of Virginia, where he is now firmly grounded in the Piedmont condition. His extensive residential practice has been concerned with the Climatic House constructed according to Specifications for Construction executed by Nomads, Surveyors and Lunatics. His fables of the Gardener and the Engineer manifest his profound respect for the spirit and resources of the renewable American urban condition. Published internationally in Global Architecture, Area, Architecture and recently the Yale Perspecta, Waldman is winner of several Progressive Architecture design citations, Urban Design Competitions, and New Jersey AIA Design Awards.


The climatic condition has been the subject of his built projects such as the Parasol and Hurricane Houses in Houston, an Oasis for the Stegosaurus and the Trojan horse in Galveston, and Parcel X, a Satyric campsite in North Garden, Virginia. He is currently working on projects of Work and Play: compounds for double-crossing generations in Great Barrington, Massachusetts; Out Houses for North Garden; and an inevitable Earthquake Shelter for Arequipa, Peru. He has recently completed construction on a pleasure garden for medievalists-in-exile in Washington, D.C. His teaching has always benchmarked the Beginning and the End, and views Architecture as a Covenant with the World. He is currently re-focused on the Lessons of the Lawn as a Teaching Technology Initiative serving the larger University grounding architectural literacy in an ethical condition.

Waldman received the ACSA Distinguished Professor Award in 1996. In 2000 as an Architecture Fellow at the American Academy, his work focused on the Villa Aurelia as Construction Site, where it is still rumored that he has discovered mirrors for the moon in the mica mines of this ancient oasis some call Rome. In the spring of 2001, he received the William R. Kenan, Jr. Endowed Professorship in Architecture. In the spring of 2002, he received an All-University Outstanding Teaching Award. Peter Waldman is among a number of faculty members asked to develop incremental additions to Campbell Hall. He placed second with Brian Tabolt on the Free Union Country Day School Competition in 2003. Waldman worked with undergraduate and graduate students in Spring 2004 studios and seminars on the North Porch of Campbell Hall as On-going Construction Site exemplifying the new department of Land as Resource and Building as a Verb. The Eric Goodwin Passage, connecting a student memorial to the Carlo Peliccia faculty memorial maple, was the resultant design-build collaboration of student/faculty citizens and perfect strangers from the larger constructive community in the summer of 2004. Peter Waldman won the first state wide Virginia Design Medal sponsored by Hanbury/Evans/Wright & Vlattas and collaborated with their Norfolk Office on residential colleges in June 2004. He is currently working on feasibility studies in collaboration with two architecture students on the new Charlottesville Housing Authority's Child-Care/Geriatric Community Center for a Monticello Avenue crossroads site. In studios this research continues on urgent matters in collaboration with students (802) and civic partners (Penn Praxis and the Franklin Institute) on alternative Philadelphia High Schools in the fall, and Building Communities through the Concordia Group and Tulane University for resurrected elementary schools this spring semester (302) in New Orleans. These pedagogic explorations and resultant projects are being assembled into a collaborative project with the Kenan Fellows called: The Lessons of the Lawn: The Word Made Flesh.