Cities and Culture

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Webinar On-Demand
From Architectural Record’s 2020 Innovation Conference
Presented by Thomas Phifer

Learning Objectives:

  1. Show how the construction of these two modern buildings create both a break and a link to the past.
  2. Define the ways in which various architectural strategies were used so as to impart the local culture into the buildings.


This test is no longer available for credit

Phifer is well known for his beautifully-detailed museum buildings, from Glenstone in Maryland to the Corning Museum of Glass in upstate New York to the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh. In this talk, the architect will delve into the urban strategies he has deployed in twinning two new cultural buildings on a 22-acre site in the heart of Warsaw, expected to open in 2022: the Museum of Modern Art Warsaw and TR Warsawa Theater. One structure will be clad in white, the other in black, and both will provide public space for visitors within and between them.


Since founding Thomas Phifer and Partners in 1997, Thomas Phifer has completed an expansion of the Glenstone Museum in Potomac, Maryland, an expansion of the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York, the United States Courthouse in Salt Lake City, Utah, the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, North Carolina, the Raymond and Susan Brochstein Pavilion at Rice University in Houston, Texas, and numerous houses in the Hudson River Valley of New York State. Ongoing projects include the Museum of Modern Art and TR Warszawa Theatre in Warsaw; Cine Colombia headquarters in Bogotá; an outdoor performance pavilion in Austin; a student center and an International Studies Center for Indiana University in Bloomington; private residences in Portugal, Texas and New York. Thomas Phifer is also engaged in the South Battery Park City Resiliency Project in Lower Manhattan. Thomas Phifer received the prestigious Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome in 1996 and was awarded the Medal of Honor from the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects in 2004. He was elected as an Academician of the National Academy of Design in 2011. In 2013, Thomas Phifer received the Arts and Letters Award in Architecture from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. In 2016, he was honored by the New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects with the President’s Award and by the Sir John Soane’s Museum Foundation. He also gave the 2016 keynote lecture at the Royal Institute of British Architects in London. In 2019, he was awarded the National Design Award in Architectural Design from the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum. Thomas Phifer is a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects and serves on the boards of the Architectural League of New York and the Sir John Soane's Museum Foundation.


Armstrong World Industries
Hofmann Facades
Benjamin Moore & Co.
Hoover Treated Wood Products
Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute
B&D Builders
Bison Innovative Products
Bradley Corp.
Draper, Inc.
GKD Metal Fabrics
Guardian Glass
Landscape Forms
Móz Designs
Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope
Rieder North America
Skyco Shading Systems, Inc.
Think Wood
The Ornamental Metal Institute of New York
The Steel Institute of New York
Architectural Record Innovation Conference 2020
CertainTeed Architectural


Originally published in October 2020