The Cooper Union
School of Architecture

LECTURES 2006–2007
Public Lectures
The Second Annual Eleanore Pettersen Lecture
Feltman Lectures
Student Lecture Series
Other Events


Architecture 06
Co-sponsored by the Architectural League of New York


The Annual Eleanore Pettersen Lecture was established in honor of Cooper Union alumna Eleanore Pettersen through a generous donation to The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture. The lectures, dedicated to the voices of women in architecture, will be a lasting tribute to Ms. Pettersen, her significant impact in the world of architecture, and her love of The Cooper Union.

Left: Phyllis Lambert, C.C., G.O.Q., C.A.L., F.R.A.I.C., Founding Director and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Centre for Architecture. Photo Michael Boulet. © Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montréal. Right: Philip Johnson, Mies van der Rohe and Phyllis Lambert in front of an image of the model for the Seagram Building (1954–58), New York. © United Press International.

The Social, Ethical, Esthetic, Cultural, and Financial Significance of «Wasted» Space: the Seagram Building, 1954-58

Thursday, November 9, 2006

Architect Phyllis Lambert is Founding Director and Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA) in Montreal, the leading international research center and museum devoted to the art of architecture. The CCA was founded in 1979 as a new form of cultural institution to build public awareness of the role of architecture in society, to promote scholarly research in the field, and to stimulate innovation in design practice. That same year, with a parallel commitment to intervention in the urban fabric, Lambert was instrumental in the establishment of the Société d'Amélioration de Milton-Parc, the largest non-profit cooperative housing renovation project in Canada. Since 1984 Phyllis Lambert has been a member of the Board of the Vieux-port de Montréal, which is responsible for the historic area's transformation from industrial to societal use, where she also chairs the Design Committee.

Lambert first made architectural history as the Director of Planning of the Seagram Building (1954–58). Recognized internationally for her contribution in advancing contemporary architecture and for her concern for the social issues of urban conservation and the role of architecture in the public realm, her lecture will explore the change in public attitude toward building and architecture in New York City, seen through the mixed messages of the city's bureaucracies in the years immediately following the completion of the Seagram Building.

Lambert holds honorary degrees from over two dozen universities in North America and Europe. In 1983 she was elected Fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada from which she received the Institute's Gold Medal in 1991. She is also Honorary Fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects and Honorary Fellow of the American Institute of Architects. Lambert was recipient of the Hadrian Award of the World Monuments Fund in 1997. She has received the highest civil honors in Canada as Companion of the Order of Canada and Grand officier of the Ordre National du Québec. France has appointed her Chevalier of the Ordre de la Pléiade and Commander of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.


The Feltman Lectures are made possible by the Ellen and Sidney Feltman Fund established at The Cooper Union to advance the principles and benefits of lighting design through the exploration of the practical, philosophical and aesthetic attributes of light and illumination.


Each semester, a group of architecture student volunteers organizes a lecture series that is open to both faculty and students within The Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture. The volunteers solicit requests from their peers, and then use these recommendations to make invitations to potential lecturers. Notable speakers from recent semesters include Charles Jencks, Alberto Perez–Gomez, and Stan Allen.