David Gersten

Professor


David Gersten is an architect, writer and educator based in New York City. He has been a Professor in The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of The Cooper Union, since 1991, where he has served as Associate Dean under Dean John Hejduk and Acting Dean of the School of Architecture. He has taught studios and seminars at every level of the School’s five-year program, as well as a series of seminars titled 'The House of Poetry' in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. He has held the Ellen and Sidney Feltman Chair and is a former Chairman of the School’s Administrative, Curriculum and Admissions Committees. Professor Gersten currently heads Architectonics, the first-year Design Studio and teaches an Advanced Concepts seminars entitled; ‘A Material Imagination of the Social Contract’  

Professor Gersten has been a visiting professor in the U.S. and abroad at: City University of New York; Rhode Island School of Design (RISD); Universidad Politecnica de Valencia in Spain; Aarhus School of Architecture, Denmark; Universidad Andina Simon Bolivar and Universidad Privada de Santa Cruz in Bolivia; and Universidad Catolica de Cordoba in Argentina. He is currently a visiting professor in the Graduate Studies division at RISD teaching seminars and studios across sixteen Masters of Fine Arts, Design and Architecture departments. He regularly teaches workshops and lectures in academic and cultural institutions though-out the world, including: The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, (Denmark), McGill University (Canada), Cranbrook Academy of Art, Harvard University, Yale University, The Canadian Center for Architecture, the National Science Foundation, the Círculo de Bellas Artes, (Madrid, Spain), The University of Puerto Rico, and the United Nations International School.

Professor Gerstens’ drawings, stories and constructions have appeared in numerous international exhibitions, and are held in the collection of the Canadian Center for Architecture, the New York City Public Library’s print collection and many private collections. He has published extensively on diverse areas of research including: The financial markets, ethics and technology, the poetic / material imagination, social justice and the linkages between perception, language and space. National and international publications including: RES: Anthropology and Aesthetics, the Peabody Museum; Ineffable; Architecture Computation and the In-expressible; The Making Of Design Principles, RISD; Critical Digital, Harvard; Boulevard, Saint Louis University; Making Science Visible, National Science Foundation. The Paris-based publisher Editions Firmin-Didot will soon release “Hunting Life: A Forever House”, a collection of Professor Gersten’s drawings and writings

In 2003, Professor Gersten co-founded Maimar LLC, a multidisciplinary finance and development company dedicated to fostering a healthy and balanced relationship between people and their environment. Serving as Managing Director and Creative Director from 2003-2010, Professor Gersten oversaw multiple projects including a 1600 acre sustainable development and a 120 acre medical campus. He also co-designed the ‘Stone House’ one of Maimar’s community centers in the Hill Country of Texas.

In 1992, Professor Gersten founded Tree-Time Workshop, Inc., serving as the New York City-based company’s President and CEO until 1998. Working primarily in the film, television and theatre industries, Tree-Time Workshop provided production design, art direction, production management and scenic construction for hundreds of projects ranging from feature-length and industrial films to live music, television and theatrical performances, to commercials and music videos. Clients included: Sony International, Columbia Records, Epic Records, VH1, the Intrepid Air and Space Museum, PBS Television and the New York Stock Exchange.  

David Gersten is a graduate of The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture of The Cooper Union. He has also pursued studies in phenomenology at the New School for Social Research as well as Islamic Studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary

 

Projects & Links

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.