April 07,2023

2010 AD100: Alexander Gorlin

by David Stewart

“Architecture is the creative synthesis of the demands of the site, the client and the vision of the architect,” says Alexander Gorlin, who has made a long and successful career in the role of architect in that equation. “All three must be present and in the right balance in order for a masterpiece to emerge.” What has emerged from Gorlin’s efforts is a wide array of structures: museums, performing arts centers, houses (which he finds “the most satisfying and intense” to design), synagogues and churches (“the most spiritually engaging”) and a Miami Beach apartment tower that bears his name.

Early on in his professional life, Gorlin, a graduate of the Yale School of Architecture and The Cooper Union, worked with two industry icons—Richard Meier and I. M. Pei. From Meier he learned “precision and a sense of light as the creator of space”; from Pei, “that a large project flows from the same source as a small detail.” Following a Rome Prize fellowship at the American Academy, he returned to New York in 1987 to start his own architectural firm, which today employs 18 people. Gorlin, who has authored many books about architecture, finds inspiration in “spiritual texts, literature, film and painting” and is working on houses in New York, Miami Beach, Kenya and Nova Scotia, apartment towers in New Jersey, a series of synagogues and—“for karmic balance”—schools and housing for the working homeless in the South Bronx.

Alexander Gorlin



  • David Stewart
  • April 07,2023

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