Associate Professor and Associate Architecture Chair
Master of Architecture, Harvard Graduate School of Design
Bachelor of Architecture, University of Tennessee College of Architecture & Design
Registered Architect in Alabama & North Carolina
Matthew Hall, RA, is an Associate Professor, Associate Architecture Program Chair, and director of the Scandinavian Study Abroad Program. Educated at the University of Tennessee and Harvard Graduate School of Design, he worked at numerous offices before entering academia and starting his own practice. Previously he taught at the Maryland Institute College of Art and the University of Tennessee College of Architecture & Design. He currently teaches at all levels of the curriculum with a specific interest in beginning design and materials and methods. He is primarily concerned with the fundamental and existential challenges of design, the rift between intentions and consequences, the dilemmas of decision making and the uncertain future contexts that all design is inevitably subject to. Hall is interested in facilitating an ideology of anti-ideology, encouraging students to be skeptical, and heterodox in their thinking while simultaneously bearing the responsibility for their design decisions relative to an estimation of their current reality and context. This all rests within the attitude that architecture is a rigorous discipline ripe with subjectivity and authoritarian bodies and opinions. It is up to the students to determine their own path, and education’s roll to provide them with the tools to do so. Hall’s practice is split between two poles, the design of places and the design of things. He is a partner in Superunison which primarily focuses on architecture and a partner in Obstructures which has designed award winning aluminum guitars, effects pedals and other objects of use. Both are highly collaborative and deal with the inherently problematic nature of design.
Interest areas in research and practice:
Beyond talking shop at design conferences on pedagogy, his research interests are situated between the quest for understanding our past and a critical estimation of speculative futures. His historical research is currently concentrated on post-war Scandinavian architecture, in particular Sigurd Lewerentz and Bernt Nyberg. He served as a curator and designer for multiple international exhibitions to include “Endangered Architecture: the work of Bernt Nyberg” and “Sigurd Lewerentz: Context, Fragments & Influence.” He co-edited Lewerentz Fragments (ACTAR / 2021) and a feature issue of A+U (#564 / 2017) on the work of Bernt Nyberg. He has contributed to numerous related publications and lectured internationally on his research and teaching. Beyond having one foot in the past, the other steps into the unknown of potentially dystopic futures with an interest in researching architecture as a problem creating endeavor. Current research initiatives are focusing on design’s dark side to estimate the potential impact of our current values and judgements.