Architecture and education, for Gerard, represent an ideal synthesis and expression of his love for the natural environment, for science, for poetry and for the visual arts. Graduating from Cornell University in 1985 with a Bachelor of Arts in English (his concentration was creative writing) after studying in both the College of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences, Gerard spent ten years as an artist and indie rock performer in Boston before attending graduate school to study architecture, receiving his Master of Architecture in 1998 from Columbia University. Before coming to Springfield in 2010, Gerard practiced architecture in Massachusetts, where he is licensed, working at a number of offices in the metro Boston area (including Epstein Joslin Architects) while engaging in his own design practice and teaching as a lead faculty member at the Boston Architectural College. He has been a guest lecturer at the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, Columbia University, and guest critic at the Rhode Island School of Design, the GSAPP at Columbia University, the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture at City College of New York, the Northeastern University School of Architecture, and the Roger Williams University School of Architecture.
A fundamental belief that the architect is ultimately both a leader in her or his local community and a citizen of the world forms the basis of Gerard’s teaching and practice. Gerard is a vocal advocate of sustainability in design, in education, in policy and in personal choice. As a member of the Drury President’s Council on Sustainability, Gerard has acted to ensure an emphasis on sustainability in the general curriculum and in University policy, while commuting everyday and everywhere in Springfield by bicycle. He combines design innovation with social practice in the collaboration called Art of Space, involving Drury students, staff, faculty and Springfield residents in the ongoing revitalization of the city’s downtown districts through the creation of space-as-event public art installations, fostering community through participation in the appropriation, creation and celebration of urban space. The subject of presentations by Gerard at national and international conferences, Art of Space has appeared on Springfield television, in newspapers and blogs, as well as online publications. Gerard’s research into the relationships of material, process, form and structural efficiency, reflected in Art of Space, has led also to a novel tensegrity system and method, currently under examination by the US Patent and Trademark Office. As an instructor, Gerard emphasizes the role that we, as architects, play in fostering an awareness and appreciation of being in, and of, the world.
Art of Space Projects:
B.A., Cornell University, 1985
M.Arch., Columbia University, 1998
Drury University faculty member since 2010
Assistant Professor since 2011