Tao DuFour

Tao DuFour's work investigates questions of embodied spatial experience, intersubjective and intergenerational understandings of architecture, landscape, and territory, and the ways in which these both constitute and are embedded in the historicity of environments. His interests are in the phenomenology of perception and corporeity, phenomenological accounts of the experience of spatiality and the "natural" world, and their relationship to ethnographic descriptions of space. He is particularly interested in exploring accounts of spatiality in the Husserlian tradition and the significance of these accounts for interpreting the experience of landscape. He has recently written on this theme as a chapter contribution to the Routledge Research Companion to Landscape Architecture. DuFour directs the Landscape and Urban Environmentalities Lab, an interdisciplinary collaborative which studies spatial and territorial relationships between cities and their hinterlands, including climate and atmospheres, industrial and agricultural landscapes, infrastructures, greenbelts, and forests. The Lab foregrounds problems of intersubjective and intergenerational environmental experience and imaginaries, employing geospatial mapping and drawing on literary and ethnographic sources and methods, including fieldwork and the use of visual media such as photography and documentary film. DuFour's current research focuses on the regional context of the Caribbean and Guianas. He holds a BArch from The Cooper Union and an MPhil and Ph.D. in the history and philosophy of architecture from the University of Cambridge. He is the author of Husserl and Spatiality: A Phenomenological Ethnography of Space.

Academic Research/Specialty Areas

  • Architectural history
  • Architectural theory
  • Landscape architecture
  • Sustainability
  • Urbanism

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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 drawing and orthographic projection as well as computational thinking. Develops understanding of, and proficiency in, projective drawing, in both analog and digital forms. Students are introuced to a variety of digital representation applications, including modeling, rendering, animation, and scripting.

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)

  • DuFour, T. "Toward a somatology of landscape." Routledge Research Companion to Landscape Architecture, 2018, 157-169.
  • Husserl and Spatiality: Toward a Phenomenological Ethnography of Space, London: Routledge, forthcoming 2020.
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