Carl Lostritto lives, works and practices in Knoxville, TN. He is Professor and Director of University of Tennessee School of Architecture.
Lostritto joined the University of Tennessee in 2022 after teaching at RISD for ten years. He was also the RISD Architecture Graduate Program Director from 2017-2022.
At RISD Lostritto taught in both the undergrad and grad professional architecture programs. As Grad Director he led curricular initiatives to reform, distinguish and grow the M.Arch program while coordinating multiple iterations of the core studio and representation sequence. He worked closely with Department and College leaders to build new initiatives and support structures for students and faculty with respect to technology, teaching, and Social Equity & Inclusion. Most years, Lostritto has also taught advanced research studios and seminars on subjects relating to computing, representation, and drawing. These courses delve deeply into ways of making that are optimistically in tune with the most contemporary design technologies. On the other hand, they are disrupted by critical framings that tend to provoke ideas and work that are purposefully out of step with mainstream representational cultures.
Lostritto is committed to teaching students how to make, draw, model, render, code and fabricate. He enjoys leading experimental tutorials and has worked with students over the years to build resources that are accessible and adaptable. Ultimately though, Lostritto is most satisfied when the studio culture incubates work that is weird, quirky, strange, and/or humorous. His courses tend to ask students to take on challenging curatorial and conceptual frameworks that feed back into design methodology and tool-making. Because technology shapes the discipline of architecture, it’s necessary for us to shape that technology.
While much of his teaching career has been within departments of architecture, Lostritto also spent some significant time with interdisciplinary faculty initiating the RISD-wide Computation, Culture, and Technology concentration. He taught first versions of its required courses, Introduction to Computation and Computation Research Studio.
In academia and his own practice, Lostritto writes computer code, samples from history, designs tools, and adapts technology to augment human authorship in pursuit of architecture. Often, this work manifests as drawing. Because drawing does not have a fixed relationship to architecture, a complimentary line of his research involves reflection, analysis, and critique of drawing relative to form and space. Much of Lostritto's practice and scholarship address the broad implications of a refined technique: computer programming to control a vintage pen plotter. This work involves intense and iterative refinement of the algorithmic, aesthetic and material nature of lines.
Recently, a thread of this work has diverged from drawing into the territory of rendering, dioramas, and the digital image. This divergence in media is consistent with an ethic of hacking and tool-making. Like his drawing practice, this work is also a conceptual enterprise. It relies on and addresses the capacity of the human eye, the adaptability of historic conventions, the role of representation, and the nature of architecture. Whether drawn, rendered, or both, his contributions to the field take the forms of artistic exhibitions, essays and professional collaborations on built and unbuilt work.
In addition to UTK and RISD, Lostritto taught architecture and design at MIT, Boston Architectural College, Catholic University of America, and the University of Maryland. He studied in a post-professional research program at MIT within the Design and Computation Group. His professional architecture degree was earned at the University of Maryland, where he was awarded the Alpha Rho Chi Medal, Thesis Prize, and was recognized by the Center for Teaching Excellence. He also earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland where he graduated summa cum laude.
Carl is @lostritto on Instagram.
Download CV here (last updated 07/22).