Jonathan A. Scelsa is an architect, urbanist and educator. Professionally, he is a cofounder of Office Public – Architecture Landscape (OP-AL), a New York-based design office focused on an integrated interdisciplinary approach to design of the public environment. Prior to founding OP-AL, Scelsa worked for the offices of Farshid Moussavi Architects / Foreign Office Architects, SHoP Architetcs, Smith-Miller + Hawkinson Architects, Preston Scott Cohen Inc, Hashim Sarkis Studios and Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. His personal and professional work has been widely published and he has engaged in a range of work from urban design and planning to architectural fabrication, construction documentation and administration.
Academically, Scelsa also holds an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Architecture position at the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture, City College of New York, where he teaches seminars on Architectural Geometry, Advanced Computation and Digital Fabrication. He has previously held academic positions at Harvard University, Parsons School of Design, Northeastern University, The Boston Architectural College and Carnegie Mellon University. Additionally, Scelsa has been an invited guest for design juries at Pratt Institute, RPI, New York City College of Technology and the Wentworth Institute of Technology.
Scelsa's scholarly agenda and primary design research concerns the constructability and functional and programming possibilities of higher-order complex geometries and surface topology at both the scales of architecture and urban form. The act of the production of surface geometry through both architectural visualization and representation as well as physical prototyping and detailing construction is of particular emphasis in his work and pedagogy. Simultaneously his research and writing have focused on urban form and the typological formal lineage of building types. Some recent publications on these topics include Linear Voids in CLOG Volume 10, and Rem and "Morphing Manhattanism" in the upcoming autumn release of Bracket 3: At Extremes.
Scelsa received a Master of Architecture in Urban Design with Distinction from Harvard University. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from Carnegie Mellon University with a concentration in Industrial Design and Fabrication.
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