Charles L. Davis II is an assistant professor of architectural history and criticism at the University at Buffalo. He received his PhD in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and has an M.Arch and B.P.S. from the University at Buffalo. His academic research examines the integrations of race and style theory in modern architectural debates from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. He has published articles and essays in Architectural Research Quarterly, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Harvard Design Magazine, Aggregate, Append-x and VIA. His design work, which examines the contemporary relevance of his academic research, has been exhibited at galleries in New York State and North Carolina.
Charles is co-editor of the cultural reader Diversity and Design: Understanding Hidden Consequences (Routledge, 2015) and the forthcoming Race and Modern Architecture (University of Pittsburgh), which collects 18 case studies on the racial discourses of modern architecture from the Enlightenment to the present. His current book manuscript, Building Character: The Racial Politics of Modern Architectural Style is forthcoming in the Culture, Politics and the Built Environment series of the University of Pittsburgh Press. This intellectual history traces the historical integrations of race and style theory in paradigms of “architectural organicism,” or movements that modeled design on the generative principles of nature. His research has been supported by grants from the Canadian Center for Architecture, the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, the University of Pennsylvania and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.