A Celebration of Architecture and Design


Archtober, New York City’s month-long celebration of architecture and design, returns this year as a hybrid virtual and in-person festival. Organized by the Center for Architecture in collaboration with 70 partners and sponsors, the 2021 installment of the festival gathers events, exhibitions, resources, and activities that celebrate the importance of architecture and design in NYC and beyond. New this year: the Archtober Guide to New York map!

“As New York City continues to reopen and recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, we welcome all New Yorkers and visitors alike to celebrate our city’s resiliency and capacity for transformation,” said Benjamin Prosky, Assoc. AIA, Executive Director of AIA New York and the Center for Architecture. “We hope you will join us and our partner institutions as we discover buildings and design experiences located across the five boroughs, all of which contribute to our city’s vibrant and diverse cultural landscape.”

Virtual and In-Person Program Offerings

As organizations and audiences alike continue to adapt to the ever-changing landscape of COVID-19, Archtober 2021 will feature a combination of in-person and virtual programming, allowing partners to take advantage of broader virtual networks while accommodating diverse audiences.

Many talks by partners including Columbia GSAPP, the Bernard and Anne Spitzer School of Architecture at CCNY, and more will shift to virtual or hybrid formats to accommodate even larger and more international audiences. Meanwhile, several tours, including after-hours visits to Green-Wood Cemetery, a guided tour of ‘T’ Space | Steven Myron Holl Foundation, and a tour of the Shuls of the Lower East Side by the Museum at Eldridge Street will happen in-person. Similarly, exhibitions have mainly returned to in-person formats, giving institutions like the Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum and the Museum of the City of New York the opportunity to safely welcome visitors into their spaces. Don’t miss the New York Botanical Garden’s Kusama: Cosmic Nature, closing at the end of October, or the Museum of Modern Art’s Reuse, Renew, Recycle: Recent Architecture from China, opening in September.

Little Island by Heatherwick Studio

For 2021, the festival’s popular “Building of the Day” series of architect-led tours returns to largely in-person programming, with tour registration launching September 13. This year’s selection of tours includes Little Island by Heatherwick Studio, the Africa Center by Caples Jefferson Architects, the Brooklyn Public Library Central Branch Renovation by Toshiko Mori Architects, the Dia Art Foundation by Architecture Research Office, and 11 Hoyt by Studio Gang.

Archtober will also continue its “Travel To” series, which digitally transports attendees to sites across the world, providing an opportunity for architectural tourism from the comfort of our homes. This year’s Travel To programming includes a tour of Paul Revere Williams projects in Los Angeles, hosted by the LA Conservancy, and a tour of DL1310, a residential project in Mexico City by Young & Ayata. And if you’re looking to travel locally, be sure to check out this year’s Weekend Getaways partners: Art Omi, ‘T’ Space | Steven Myron Holl Foundation, Grace Farms, the Glass House, and the New Canaan Historical Society.

Cooper Hewitt’s Nature by Design, Courtesy of Cooper Hewitt

Perhaps unsurprisingly, many partners have also organized talks and panels that will foster important conversations around the built environment implications of the pandemic and massive ecological change. These include:

Beyond timed and ticketed activities, this year’s Archtober site will once again include a section of evergreen resources for architecture lovers of all ages. The Center for Architecture’s “Architecture at Home” resources and the Cooper Hewitt’s “Design It Yourself” series provide families with simple, downloadable instructions for DIY activities. Design enthusiasts can also dive into the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation’s “Dynamic National Archive of Women in American Architecture” or participate in one of Village Preservation’s self-led historic site tours, powered by the Urban Archive app.

Visit our website, www.archtober.org, to see our lineup of events for 2021.

The Waterline Club by the Rockwell Group. Photo Scott Frances

New This Year: The Archtober Guide to NYC Map

At its core, the Archtober festival is meant to encourage and inspire audiences to engage with the architecture and design that surrounds them. In order to further expand this mission, this year, the festival has launched the Archtober Guide to NYC, a mobile map designed for use on the go. While in the mobile map, users can experience the city through the eyes of an architect, while being pointed towards nearby architectural sites, cultural institutions, and parks (along with spots to stop for a drink or snack!) that help define New York City as one of the country’s most stimulating design arenas.

And don’t miss out on an opportunity to purchase some exclusive Archtober merch! The festival’s new Archtober Shop features several items—from t-shirts to baseball caps to fanny packs and even socks—for you to explore the city in style.

Tammany Hall by BKSK Architects, New York, NY.

About Archtober

New York City’s Architecture and Design Month—now in its eleventh year—presents a wide array of events that focus on the importance of architecture and design in everyday life. Organized by the Center for Architecture in collaboration with partnering organizations across the city, the festival raises awareness of the important role of design in our city and the richness of New York’s built environment. www.archtober.org

About the Center for Architecture

The Center for Architecture is the premier cultural venue for architecture and the built environment in New York City, informed by the complexity of the City’s urban fabric and in dialogue with the global community. The Center shares a home with the AIA New York Chapter and has the unique advantage of drawing upon the ideas and experiences of practicing architects to produce thought-provoking exhibitions, informative public programs, and quality design education experiences for K-12 students. It also leads New York City’s annual month-long architecture and design festival, Archtober. The Center for Architecture’s aim is to further public knowledge about New York City architecture and architects, foster exchange and collaboration among members of the design, development, building, scholarly, and policy sectors, and inspire new ideas about the role of design in communities by presenting contemporary and practical issues in architecture and urbanism to a general audience. www.centerforarchitecture.org



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