Tao DuFour

Tao DuFour is an architect and scholar whose work explores the overlaps between architecture, philosophy, and anthropology. His theoretical projects and writing address philosophical and anthropological interpretations of the natural life-world that inform conceptions of architecture, building on his research on the phenomenology of Edmund Husserl, and the theoretical heredity of Claude Lévi-Strauss. DuFour is interested in exploring the historicity of notions as wilderness, the "wild," the "feral," the "savage," and so forth, as these relate to the history of the production of social and natural scientific knowledge. DuFour relates these research interests to his design work, which investigates possibilities for mediating traditional and computational techniques, specifically as regards the connectivity between synthetic and analytic approaches to geometry.

DuFour has exhibited work in New York City, Rome, Toronto, Cambridge, Milwaukee, at the Royal Academy of Arts in London, and most recently the Bibliowicz Family Gallery at Cornell. He is currently finalizing a monograph on his work as Rome Prize holder, to be published through The British School at Rome.

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Classes (Selected)

  • ARCH 2101 Design IIIStudents develop an understanding of context and precedent in the construction of architectural form, and are introduced to contextual and programmatic densities in addition to circulatory, spatial, and organizational strategies in the design process.
  • ARCH 4101/4102/5101/5116/8913 Option Studio: Raw Nature/Cooked Nature IAdvanced programs in architectural design, with options including, but not limited to, urban design, architectural technology, computational design, ecology, culture, and representation.
  • ARCH 5402 Architecture, Culture, and SocietySocial and cultural values are both reflected in buildings, landscapes, and cities, and constructed by them. At the same time, this articulation of people and built environments is framed by general socio-economic and political systems of ordering that often transcend locale. This course explores how these complexities might impact design practice, drawing on concepts and methods from disciplines such as anthropology, geography and cultural studies, as well as architectural history and theory, and referring to examples from around the world. 
  • ARCH 5511 Constructed Drawing IFocuses on bridging hand drawing and sketching with digital representation as vehicles for design thinking and perception. Observational, analytical, and transformational exercises develop creative proficiency in freehand line drawing and orthographic projection as well as computational thinking.

Awards, Grants, and Fellowships (Selected)

  • Architecture Fellowship, School of Architecture and Urban Planning, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee (2013)
  • Rome Prize in Architecture, The British School at Rome (2012)
  • Overseas Research Scholarship Award, Cambridge University (2006)
  • Prince of Wales Chevening Scholarship, Cambridge Commonwealth Trust (2003)
  • Honor Grant, Eleanor Allwork Scholarship, AIA NY Chapter (2001)

Exhibitions and Presentations (Selected)

  • Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition, London (2014)
  • Fabricating Wilderness, Architecture Fellow Exhibition, SARUP/UWM (2014)
  • Spring Mostra, The British School at Rome (2013)

Publications (Selected)

  • Colonnofagia and the Dissolution of the Wall: Projecting Piranesi's Rome (2014)