She has designed banks and hotels, college master plans and retail spaces, galleries, residences, and studios for leading artists. In more than twenty-five years of practice, Deborah Berke has produced an extraordinary body of work that is grounded in the conviction that architecture is not an end in itself, but a setting that is enhanced by its use.
This book is the first to explore Berke’s remarkable career as an architect, designer, teacher, and writer who has forged a strong and evolving aesthetic. As examined in a series of engaging essays, Berke’s architecture blends tectonic coherence, a keen sensitivity to the intrinsic qualities of materials, and meticulous attention to detail. While all of her work possesses these distinctive attributes, each project is subtly rooted in its context and ennobles the uses specific to that space.
Through newly commissioned photographs, twenty-one of Berke’s thought-provoking projects appear here, including the Irwin Union Bank, Yale School of Art, 21c Museum Hotel, and Marianne Boesky Gallery. Also featured are Berke’s reflections on her growing interest in the “here and now”—an approach to architecture intended to counteract the banal placelessness of much of our environment by designing buildings that are intensely bound to and grounded in their sites.