Denise Scott Brown is an architect, planner and urban designer and a theorist, writer and educator whose projects and ideas have influenced designers and thinkers worldwide. Working in collaboration with Robert Venturi over the last half century, she has guided the course of Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates by serving on the broad range of the firm’s projects in architecture, and as Principal-in-Charge of urban planning, urban design and campus planning.
Her experience in interdisciplinary work, teaching and research has contributed to VSBA’s breadth and depth in architectural design. Scott Brown made plans for South Street and Old City, Philadelphia, Jim Thorpe PA, Princeton Borough NJ, Miami Beach FL, and Memphis TN. She has written and advised on New York’s World Trade Center site, Philadelphia’s Penn’s Landing, the Bouregreg Valley in Morocco, and the city of New Orleans and was Principal for VSBA’s programming of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian. She conducted master planning for the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan, and area planning studies for Dartmouth, Bryn Mawr and Williams Colleges; the Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Studies at Harvard University: and Kentucky, Brown and Tsinghua (Beijing) Universities. She evolved precinct plans and conceptual designs for architecture projects that grew from these studies, at Dartmouth (Baker-Berry Library), Penn (Perelman Quadrangle), Kentucky (Biomedical/Biological Sciences Research Building) and Michigan (Life Sciences Institute, Undergraduate Science Building, and Palmer Commons). She then continued on design teams for these and other major architecture projects, including the Sainsbury Wing of the British National Gallery; Mielparque resort in Kirifuri National Park, Japan; and the Département de la Haute-Garonne provincial capitol building in Toulouse, France. Scott Brown held architecture and planning professorships at the Universities of Pennsylvania, Harvard, UCLA, UC Berkeley and Yale, and visiting positions at Rice, Oberlin, UC Santa Barbara and Princeton. Her research projects, Learning from Las Vegas (1972; revised edition 1977, with Robert Venturi and Steven Izenour) and Learning from Levittown (1970 with Robert Venturi) investigated the emerging automobile city, the relation of social and physical in architecture and urbanism, and the role of symbolism and communication in architecture. Their techniques have influenced the evolution of architectural research over the last forty years.
Porto Academy is the result of an enormous passion for architecture as a discipline. We admire the figures that dream about it, who build, study and promote it. We believe that practice - as an exercise of the architect’s profession - is central to the future of the discipline, and therefore one of the reasons why we’ve founded Porto Academy. For a week period, one lives the passion for the discipline of architecture and enjoys intellectual freedom.