Robert McCarter is a practicing architect, professor of architecture, and author. He is the Ruth and Norman Moore Professor of Architecture at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis. From 1991-2007, he was professor of architecture, and for ten years he was director of the School of Architecture, both at the University of Florida. From 1986-1991, he was associate professor and assistant dean at the Graduate School of Architecture, Columbia University, New York. He was visiting critic at the Berlage Institute in Rotterdam; he was appointed as the Frederic Lindley Morgan Distinguished Professor of Architectural Design at the University of Louisville; he has taught as visiting studio critic at North Carolina State University; and he has been appointed as a Visiting Scholar at the American Academy in Rome on three occasions. During his 33 years in academia, including 17 years in leadership roles at three institutions, McCarter has taught at least one design studio every semester, and he has taught more than 1,800 students. He coordinated the architecture lecture series at Columbia University (1986-1991), University of Florida (1991-2005), and Washington University in St. Louis (2007-2012). He invited Wang Shu to lecture in February 2012, the lecture taking place only two days after Wang was announced as the 2012 Pritzker Prize winner; “Someone at Washington University in St. Louis just hit the lecture jackpot,” is the way Blair Kamin of the Chicago Tribune described this event.
McCarter has practiced architecture continuously since he began his internship in 1977, and has been a licensed architect since 1982. From 1991-2007, he was president of D-Mc2 Architecture, P. A., in Tioga, Florida, during which time his firm had twelve buildings constructed to their designs. He has his own architectural practice in St. Louis, Robert McCarter, Architect, and he is currently involved, in association with Alfonso Architects of Tampa, Florida, in the renovation of Le Corbusier’s Atelier and Apartment, and the garage conversion of Alvar Aalto’s Maison Louis Carré, both in Paris, France, among other projects.
McCarter has an extensive bibliography and is currently undertaking research in preparation for writing monographs and essays on a number of contemporary and modern architects, including Kashef Chowdhury, Wiel Arets, Alfonso Architects, Barclay-Crousse Architects and Robert Ernest, Architect.
McCarter was selected as one of the “Ten Best Educators” in American schools of architecture in the education issue of Architect magazine, December 2009. In 2018, he was selected to be one of 71 participants in the International Curated Exhibit of Freespace: The 16th Biennale of Architecture in Venice, Italy, by the curators, Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara. Among other awards and honors, McCarter was a Juror for the Piranesi European Architecture Prize in 2009 in Piran, Slovenia; two books he authored, Louis I. Kahn and On and By Frank Lloyd Wright, were finalists for the inaugural Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) International Book Awards, 2006; he received the Rotch Foundation Traveling Studio Award in 2003 (one of only ten awarded nationally), with which he took a graduate studio to Finland; in 1989, he received a Graham Foundation Grant in support of his work on Frank Lloyd Wright; and while a post-professional graduate student, he was awarded first prize in the SOM Traveling Fellowship National Design Competition in 1983.