David Adjaye Lecture

Brown, three-story angular building with blue sky.
National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC. photo / Adjaye Associates
Grey building resembling two stacked boxes with blue sky background.
Sugar Hill mixed-use development in Manhattan. photo / Adjaye Associates
National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC. photo / Adjaye Associates Sugar Hill mixed-use development in Manhattan. photo / Adjaye Associates

Sir David Adjaye, OBE, is recognized as a leading architect of his generation.

Adjaye was born in Tanzania to Ghanaian parents and his influences range from contemporary art, music, and science to African art forms and the civic life of cities. In 1994, he set up his first office, where his ingenious use of materials and his sculptural ability established him as an architect with an artist's sensibility and vision. He reformed his studio as Adjaye Associates in 2000. The firm now has offices in London, New York and Accra with projects in the U.S., UK, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

His largest project to date, the $540 million Smithsonian Institute National Museum of African American History and Culture, opened on the National Mall in Washington, DC, in the fall of 2016, and was named Cultural Event of the Year by the New York Times. Other prominent completed work includes the Idea Stores in London (2005); credited with pioneering a new approach to library services; the Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO (2010); the Sugar Hill mixed-use social housing scheme in Harlem, New York (2015); and the Aishti Foundation retail and art complex in Beirut (2015). Prominent ongoing projects include a new home for the Studio Museum in Harlem, a new headquarters building for the International Finance Corporation in Dakar, and the just-announced National Holocaust Memorial and Learning Centre in London. 

Adjaye has held distinguished professorships at Harvard, Princeton, and Yale universities.

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