Skip to main content

Preston Scott Cohen and Hernan Diaz Alonso: Duel + Duet

W.M. Keck Lecture Hall
October 17, 2016 at 7:00pm
Potrait of Preston Scott Cohen

Preston Scott Cohen, Principal, Preston Scott Cohen, Inc., Gerald M. McCue Professor, Harvard University Graduate School of Design

portrait of hernan diaz alonzo

Hernan Diaz Alonso

Preston Scott Cohen is the Gerald M. McCue Professor at Harvard University Graduate School of Design where he was Chair of Architecture from 2008-2013. His firm, Preston Scott Cohen, Inc. of Cambridge, MA, is recognized for the design of renowned cultural and educational institutions around the world including the Sarmiento Angulo Performing Arts Center in Bogota, Colombia; the Taubman Wing at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor; the Taiyuan Museum of Art in Taiyuan, China; the Amir Building of the Tel Aviv Museum of Art and the Goldman Sachs Canopy in New York. Cohen has received numerous awards and honors including induction as an academician at the National Academy of Art, five Progressive Architecture Awards, first prizes for seven international architectural competitions and an Academy Award in Architecture from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Cohen is the author of Lightfall (Skira Rizzoli, 2016), The Return of Nature (Routledge, 2015), Contested Symmetries (Princeton Press, 2001) and numerous theoretical and historical essays on architecture. His work has been widely published and exhibited and is held in important collections including The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and the Fogg Museum of Art, Harvard.

Hernan Diaz Alonso assumed directorship of SCI-Arc in September 2015. A faculty member at the school since 2001, he has served in several leadership roles including Coordinator of the Graduate Thesis program from 2007-2010, and Graduate Programs Chair from 2010 until the present. He has been widely credited with spearheading the transition of SCI-Arc to digital technologies, playing a key role in shaping the school’s graduate curriculum. In parallel to his role at SCI-Arc, Diaz Alonso is Principal of the Los Angeles-based Xefirotarch, a multidisciplinary practice praised for work at the intersection of design, animation, interactive environments and radical exploration of architecture. A gifted educator, he has been acknowledged throughout the years with prestigious appointments such as Yale University’s Louis I. Kahn Visiting Assistant Professorship of Architectural Design in 2010, Visiting Design Studio Faculty at Columbia GSAPP from 2004-2010, and an ongoing appointment in the Urban Strategies Postgraduate Program at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. In Spring 2015, he served as Yale University’s Eero Saarinen Professor of Architectural Design.