Kurt Hunker, FAIA

Director of Graduate Programs and Chair of the Graduate Program in Architecture
NewSchool of Architecture & Design, San Diego

Bio-Sketch

Professor of Architecture at the NewSchool of Architecture and Design in San Diego, with an emphasis on Design, Theory and Criticism; Fellow of the American Institute of Architects; former NewSchool Provost; Coordinator of the Executive Masters Program; Academic Regent of the California Architectural Foundation. Responsible for the development of curriculum in several program areas; author of articles on theory and criticism and recipient of teaching awards; presenter on topics ranging from tall buildings to Alvar Aalto at conferences from Los Angeles to Moscow. Consultant to architectural firms in the conceptualization, programming and design of educational, civic, recreational and performance facilities; recipient of design excellence awards from the AIA and other professional organizations at the local, state, regional and national levels; designer of projects published in various architectural and educational journals including Architecture, Texas Architect and American School & University.

ANFA Themes

As an architectural educator, my goal is to strengthen the connection to neuroscience that ANFA was founded upon through the development of new courses and curriculum. In this way, I hope to make neuroscience research as it relates to the built environment more accessible to a wider, design-oriented audience. The promotion of architectural research agendas and academic scholarship, key activities in my role at NewSchool, can only benefit from this initiative. In particular, I am interested in expanding the connection between neuroscience and what we call “healthy urbanism” to consider the vital issue of social sustainability. Furthermore, through my own work in architectural theory and criticism I am interested, at a personal level, in neuro-aesthetics and the brain’s processes as it considers one of architecture’s most elusive yet enduring aspects, the pursuit of beauty.