Two Black Scholars Win Architecture Awards From the American Academy of Arts and Letters

Mabel O. Wilson and Mario Gooden of the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University in New York City, each was honored with an award from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The duo was honored for their exploration of ideas in architecture as co-directors of the Global Africa Lab at Columbia, which explores the nature of the global African diaspora through design, research and technology.

Professor Wilson teaches architectural design and history/theory courses at Columbia. She is also appointed as a Senior Fellow at the Institute for Research in African American Studies. She is the author of Negro Building: Black Americans in the World of Fairs and Museums (University of California Press 2012) and Begin With the Past: Building the National Museum of African American History and Culture (Smithsonian Books, 2016).

Dr. Wilson earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from the University of Virginia. She holds a master of architecture degree from Columbia University and a Ph.D in American studies from New York University.

Mario Gooden is an associate professor of practice at Columbia and Principal at Huff + Gooden Architects. Gooden has taught at Yale, the University of Florida, and the University of Arizona. He is the author of Dark Space: Architecture, Representation, Black Identity (Columbia University Press, 2016).

Gooden graduated magna cum laude from Clemson University in South Carolina with a bachelor’s degree in design. He holds a master of architecture degree from Columbia University.


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