alan balfour
alan balfour

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Educated at Edinburgh and Princeton and a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects, Alan Balfour is Professor and Dean of the College of Architecture at Georgia Tech, a position he came to after serving as the architecture dean at Rensselaer. He was formerly chairman of the Architectural Association in London, and architecture dean at Rice University in Houston. Balfour was the year 2000 recipient of the Topaz Medal, the highest recognition given in North America to an educator in architecture.

Balfour's most recent book Creating a Scottish Parliament (with David McCrone, Finlay Brown, Edinburgh 2005) offers an intimate exploration of the conceptualization of the political structure for a devolved Scotland and the architecture that would symbolize and be the instrument for its advancement. Though the city is the ostensible subject of Alan Balfour's writing in recent years, the underlying concern has been with exploring the cultural imagination. In 2002 he completed three books on three world cities; in each the city is viewed as the most tangible residue of the complexity of society's desires. Shanghai was published in 2002 and New York in 2001, (both from Wiley/Academy, London). The first in the series was Berlin published by Academy Editions in 1995, which documents the transformation of Berlin before and after the collapse of the 'Wall', This and an earlier book Berlin: The Politics of Order: 1737-1989 (Rizzoli 1990), received AIA International Book Awards. Other books include Portsmouth (Studio Vista 1970), Rockefeller Center: Architecture as Theater (McGraw-Hill 1978), with contributions to The Edge of the Millennium (Cooper Hewitt 1993), Cities of Artificial Excavation: The Work of Peter Eisenman (Rizzoli International /CCA 1994) and Recovering Landscape (Princeton Architectural Press 1999).

He has recently completed Temple Mount, a study of the constructive and destructive power of faith played out in the myths and realities of one place, Temple Mount in Jerusalem. It is a journey through four thousand years of constantly shifting realty religion and reality in the Middle East.

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