Richard Guy Wilson

B.A., University of Colorado, 1963
M.A., University of Michigan, 1968
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1972

Commonwealth Professor of Architectural History, American Architecture Chair, Department of Architectural History

Richard Guy Wilson holds the Commonwealth Professor’s Chair in Architectural History at the University of Virginia (Thomas Jefferson’s University) in Charlottesville, Virginia, where he is also Chair of the Department of Architectural History. His specialty is the architecture, design and art of the 18th to the 20th century both in America and abroad.

He was born in Los Angeles—-the home of everything new—-and grew up in a Rudolph Schindler house, the leading modernist, designed for his parents. He received his undergraduate training at the University of Colorado and MA and Ph.D. at the University of Michigan. He taught at Michigan and Iowa State University before coming to Virginia in 1976.

Mr. Wilson has received a number of academic honors, among them a Guggenheim fellow, prizes for distinguished writing, and in 1986 he was made an honorary member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA). He received the outstanding professor award at the University of Virginia in 2001. He has directed the Victorian Society’s Nineteenth Century Summer School since 1979 that has been located in Boston, Philadelphia and currently Newport, RI. He has served as an advisor and commentator for a number of television programs on PBS, C-Span, History channel and A&E; he appeared on most sixty-seven segments of America’s Castles.

A frequent lecturer for universities, museums and professional groups, he has also published widely with articles and reviews to his credit. He is the author or joint author of 14 books that deal with American and modern architecture. Among the most recent include books on Thomas Jefferson’s design of the University of Virginia, a contribution to the recent book on RM Schindler (2001), co-author of Richmond’s Monument Avenue (2001), principle author and editor of the Society of Architectural Historians book, Buildings of Virginia: Tidewater and Piedmont (2002), and The Colonial Revival House (2004).

He has been the curator and author for major museum exhibitions such as The American Renaissance, 1876-1917, The Art that is Life: The Arts and Crafts Movement in America, The Machine Age in America, 1918-1941, and The Making of Virginia Architecture. He participated in the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s “Louis Comfort Tiffany and Laurelton Hall” exhibition which opened in November 2006.

Department of Architectural History
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University of VirginiaSchool of Architecture