Stanley Tigerman

Architect / United States / Tigerman McCurry Architects

(1930–2019). A principal in the Chicago architectural and design firm of Tigerman McCurry and a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects, Stanley Tigerman received both his architectural degrees from Yale University in 1960 and 1961. He has designed numerous buildings and installations throughout the United States, Bangladesh, Canada, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Portugal, Spain, West Germany, Yugoslavia, and Puerto Rico, and given 950 lectures throughout the world. He has been a visiting chaired professor at numerous universities, including Yale and Harvard, and he was the resident architect at the American Academy in Rome in 1980. He has served on advisory committees of the Yale and Princeton Schools of Architecture and the Chicago Art Institute’s Department of Architecture and was Director of the School of Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago for eight years. In 1994, in association with Eva Maddox, he Co-Founded ARCHEWORKS, a socially oriented design laboratory and school, where he remained as Director until 2008 when they were named Purpose Prize Fellows by Civic Ventures.

Tigerman is the author of seven books: The Chicago Tribune Tower Competition and Late Entries (1980); Versus: An American Architect’s Alternatives (1982); The California Condition: A Pregnant Architecture (1982); The Architecture of Exile (1988); Stanley Tigerman: Buildings and Projects 1966–1989 (1989); Schlepping through Ambivalence (2011); and his autobiography, Designing Bridges to Burn (2011) and illustrated fairy tale, Dorothy in Dreamland (1991). In addition, he has edited ten books: Visionary Chicago Architecture and Design on the Edge: Chicago Architect’s Reimagine Neighborhoods; as well as The Archeworks Papers, volumes 1–5; Design Denied, Convention Challenged; and Passing the Baton. His current literary work in progress is an essay on ethics for POINT Journal, to be published by Princeton University Press, and a manuscript on the subject of “displacement.”

Stanley Tigerman received Yale University’s first Alumni Arts Award in 1985. In 1976 he was chairman of the AIA Committee on Design and coordinated the exhibition and book entitled Chicago Architects. He was a founding member of “The Chicago Seven” as well as of the Chicago Architectural Club. In 1989 he was given the Dean of Architecture Award, in 1990 he was inducted into the Interior Design Hall of Fame, in 1992 he received the Illinois Academy of Fine Arts Award, and in 1996 he received the American Jewish Committee’s Cultural Achievement Award. The International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers honored Tigerman with the Louis Sullivan Award in September 2000. In 2002, Tigerman was presented with an honorary Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Herrington Institute of Design. In 2008, he was named the recipient of the AIA/ACSA Topaz Medallion for Excellence in Architectural Education and the AIA Illinois Gold Medal in recognition of outstanding lifetime service.

Tigerman was one of the architects chosen to represent the United States at the 1976 and 1980 Venice Biennales and was part of the “New Chicago Architecture” exhibition at the Museo di Castelvecchio in Verona. In 1990 his work was exhibited at the Art Institute of Chicago in “Stanley Tigerman: Recent Works.” In August 2011, the Yale University School of Architecture opened “Ceci n'est pas une reverie,” a retrospective of his work. Tigerman’s firm is the recipient of 151 design awards from the National AIA, the Chicago Chapter AIA, PA Design Awards, and Record Houses and Interiors.

Tigerman’s building credits as principal designer include institutional projects such as the Five Polytechnic Institutes in Bangladesh, The Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago, and The Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie, Illinois. He has completed both mixed-use high-rise and low-rise housing projects throughout the United States, as well as in Germany and Japan, and he has designed exhibition installations for museums in the United States, Portugal, and Puerto Rico. His collaborative works include the Chicago Central Area Plan, the 1992 Chicago World’s Fair, London’s Kings’ Cross, and St. Pancras’s High Density Mixed Use Urban Plan, and currently Chicago’s 2016 Olympic Village Proposal. Of the 400-plus projects defining his career, 185 built works embrace virtually every building type.

Critics and historians have written of his work:

“Tigerman, who has done a lot of serious and important building in and around Chicago (and also around the world), has always been an explorer and an articulate exponent of alternatives.”
—Walter Wagner, Architectural Record, September 1976

“Tigerman’s willingness to allow his architecture to change drastically over time, while alert to the power and anxiety of stylistic influence, have also been a continuous exploration of the problem of architectural meaning and the expression of that meaning in built form.”
—Catherine Ingraham, catalogue from the 1990 Art Institute of Chicago exhibition “Stanley Tigerman: One Man Show”

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