Moshe Sadfie was born in Haifa, Israel and moved to Canada with his family as a teenager. He attended McGill University and apprenticed with Louis Kahn (another renown architect with a Jewish background). Safdie catapulted to fame with his Habitat '67 project, an adaptation of his McGill master's thesis built for the exposition in Montreal.
During his illustrious career, Safdie has worked on many projects that are connected with Jewish culture and history, including the Holocaust History Museum at Yad Vashem and extensive work renovating the Old City of Jerusalem. He writes about many of his experiences working on projects in Jerusalem in his book Jerusalem: The Future of the Past.
Safdie's connections to the GSD also run deep; he served as the Director of the Urban Design Program and subsequently was the Ian Woodner Professor of Architecture and Urban Design. He also taught a Jerusalem-based studio one semester at the GSD.
Safdie has seemingly been everywhere in the architectural news a lot recently, having recently completed the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington D.C., the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas.
The information of his upcoming talk has been reposted below from the GSD website:
Moshe Safdie, "On Invention and Fitness"
WhenTuesday, February 21
06:30pm - 08:00pm
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WherePiper Auditorium, Gund Hall, 48 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA
Moshe Safdie is an architect, urban planner, educator, theorist, and author who embraces acomprehensive and humane design philosophy. Safdie is committed to architecture thatsupports and enhances a project’s program; that is informed by the geographic, social, andcultural elements that define a place; and that responds to human needs and aspirations. Major projects by Moshe Safdie currently under construction or recently completed includeMamilla Alrov Center, a 40-acre development that runs contiguous with the Old City inJerusalem; Marina Bay Sands, a mixed-use integrated resort in Singapore; Khalsa HeritageMemorial Complex, the national museum of the Sikh people in India; the United States Instituteof Peace Headquarters in Washington, D.C.; the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts inKansas City, Missouri; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas; andGolden Dream Bay, a residential and retail complex in Qinhuangdao, China.
Safdie has designed and realized a wide range of projects around the world, including cultural,civic, and educational institutions; mixed-use urban centers and airports; and master plans forexisting neighborhoods and entirely new cities. Many of his buildings have become belovedregional and national landmarks, including Habitat ’67, Montreal, Canada; Exploration PlaceScience Center, Wichita, Kansas; Salt Lake City Public Library, Salt Lake City, Utah; PeabodyEssex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts; Skirball Cultural Center, Los Angeles, California; theNational Gallery of Canada; and Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum, Jerusalem, Israel.In 1978, after teaching at Yale, Safdie relocated his residence and principle office to Boston, where he also served as the Director of the Urban Design Program at the Harvard UniversityGraduate School of design, and subsequently was the Ian Woodner Professor of Architecture and Urban Design. In addition to numerous articles on the theory and practice of architecture, Safdie has written several books, most notably: Beyond Habitat (1970), For Everyone a Garden (1974),Form and Purpose (1982), Jerusalem: The Future of the Past (1989), and The City After theAutomobile (1997). Moshe Safdie II, a second monograph of his work, was published in 2009.Based in Boston with offices in Toronto, Jerusalem and Singapore, Safdie has been the recipientof numerous awards, honorary degrees, and civil honors, including the Companion of the Orderof Canada and the Gold Medal of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.
Photo: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
Bentonville, Arkansas, US. © Timothy Hursley