The Banham Fellowship in the Department of Architecture is intended to support design work that situates architecture within the general field of socio-cultural and material critique.
The fellowship honors the legacy of Peter Reyner Banham, who taught at UB from 1976-80 and produced a foundational body of scholarship on material/visual culture as a reflection of contemporary social life. Banham spent his time in Buffalo engaged in a scholarly project on the imaginary of American industrial architecture at work in early modernism that took the form of historical research, hands-on engagement and seminar instruction, resulting in his landmark work, A Concrete Atlantis.
In celebration of Banham's legacy of experimental criticism, this fellowship supports the research and creative activity of emerging practitioners. Over the course of a year, fellows teach, deliver a public lecture and prepare an exhibition culminating from their research and creative work at the school.
Zherui Wang is a designer and researcher based in Brooklyn, New York. He has taught design studios and seminars at the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University and Pratt Institute, and has contributed to the design and research endeavours at various offices and institutions, including Barkow Leibinger Architects, Pratt Institute Center for Experimental Structures, Columbia University Laboratory for Architectural Broadcasting, and Princeton University Andlinger Center for the Energy and Environment.
As the 2020-21 Banham Fellow, Wang will explore the relationship between architecture and climate change through the lens of spatial repercussions and digital and analog making. His research and teaching proposal, "Re-Forming the Climate: the Architectonic of the Respiratory Space," revisits Reyner Banham’s The Architecture of the Well-tempered Environment after five decades.
Zherui received a Bachelor of Architecture at Pratt Institute School of Architecture, where he was awarded Alpha Rho Chi Medal, Pratt Endowment Fund, and Lee & Norman Rosenfeld Award for Best Thesis. He also holds a Post-Professional Master of Architecture from Princeton University under the Princeton University Fellowship and Charles & Margret Hanna Fellowship. His thesis titled Climate as a Medium was awarded the Suzanne Kolarik Underwood Prize, the highest honor from Princeton.