Milton S. F. Curry

Milton S. F. Curry is a Professor of Architecture and Senior Associate Dean for Strategic Initiatives and Engagement at Cornell University's College of Architecture, Art and Planning (AAP); founding editor of CriticalProductive (a peer-reviewed academic journal focused on culture, arts, and spatial practice) distributed by MIT Press; and principal of Milton Curry ProjectStudio design consultancy. 

Curry produces creative work and scholarship on the role of architecture in shaping social consciousness and the intersectional role of race, class, and urban geography embedded in modern and contemporary aesthetic practices in the Americas. At Cornell, he will launch and direct the Black Cities Americas Lab, which will examine the possibilities of environmental justice and reparations movements on the urban design and redevelopment of America's inner cities. Current work also includes three book manuscripts on architecture race theory, diversity in the practice and profession of architecture, and the cultural significance and critical histories of the boutique hotel. In addition, Curry leads the curatorial team at work on three exhibitions (USC Architecture, Getty, LACMA) on the life and work of Paul R. Williams, slated to open in late 2026.

Curry was Dean at the University of Southern California School of Architecture from 2017–22 and Associate Dean / Associate Professor at the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning from 2010–17. He was a professor at Cornell Architecture from 1995–2010 and Director of the Cornell University Council for the Arts from 2002–08. Curry serves on the Museum of Modern Art Board of Trustees Architecture and Design Acquisitions Committee and the Abode Communities Board of Directors and Finance Committee. 

Curry received a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University in 1988 and a Master of Architecture II post-professional degree with distinction from the Harvard University Graduate School of Design in 1992.

Academic Research/Specialty Areas

  • Architectural design
  • Architectural theory
  • Cities
  • Urbanism
  • Architectural design
  • Architectural theory
  • Black aesthetics
  • Critical theory
  • Urbanism / urban design

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Awards, Grants, and Fellowships (Selected)

  • Principal Investigator: Ford Foundation Grant: Supporting USC Architecture Paul R. Williams Archive Initiative, 2020
  • Principal Investigator: A. W. Mellon Foundation Urbanism and Humanities Grant: Michigan-Mellon Project on Egalitarianism and the Metropolis, 2015–19
  • Principal Investigator: The Kresge Foundation Education Grant: Michigan Research Studio Detroit, 2014–16
  • Senior Faculty Advisor: University of Michigan School of Public Health Momentum Child Obesity Center Grant: Active ClassSpace Research Project, 2013–15

Exhibitions and Presentations (Selected)

  • LaToya Ruby Frazier: The Last Cruze, 2021, partnership with USC Architecture Office of Dean / California African American Museum
  • Museum of Modern Art: New York Black Reconstructions exhibition (2021), Advisory Board Member 2018-21
  • NegroCity Housing + Harlem Target: Studio Museum in Harlem, Harlemworld as Metaphor exhibition (2004). Curators: Thelma Golden, director; Christine Kim, curator

Publications (Selected)

  • 2021: "Toward an Architecture Race Theory" in Reconstructions: Architecture and Blackness in America MoMA Exhibition Catalogue, Sean Anderson and Mabel Wilson, Editors (New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2020)
  • 2012: "Urban Space: Production of Race," p. 46-53, in Where are the Utopian Visionaries, Hansy Better, Editor (Pittsburgh: Periscope Press, 2012)
  • 2011–13: Editor in Chief: CriticalProductive Journal Issue V2.1: Post-Capitalist City, Winter 2013; Issue V1.1: Theoretic Action, Autumn 2011. Publisher: CriticalProductive, Inc. / Distributor: Disticor
  • 1993–99: Founding Coeditor: Appendx Journal Issues 1-4 1993-1999 /Publisher / Distributor: Appendx, Inc.
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