Peter Gisolfi, AIA, ASLA, LEED AP
The Legacy of Peter Gisolfi
Mr. Gisolfi was the founding partner of Peter Gisolfi Associates, Architects and Landscape Architects, where he served as Principal-in-Charge of design. He developed the initial concepts for most of the firm's projects and maintained oversight on each to assure that the design intent was realized.
Mr. Gisolfi was Professor of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the Spitzer School of Architecture at the City College of New York, where he was Chairman of the School for eight years. Previously, he was an Adjunct Associate Professor of Architecture at Columbia University for twelve years.
He was a critical thinker whose essays and opinions have been featured in the national press for two decades. His first book, Finding the Place of Architecture in the Landscape, was published by Images Publishing in 2008. In the introduction to this book, the eminent scholar and professor, Vincent J. Scully, Jr., said:
"...Gisolfi is a regional architect, of an especially rich and active region, one that in the end seems to engender schools of every kind as its proudest public structures. These institutions, whether newly designed, enlarged, renovated, or rebuilt, have formed the heart of Gisolfi’s practice. This is especially fortunate, because it is in such programs, always involving a group of buildings—a campus—that Gisolfi can most appropriately do what he does best, which is to relate a number of buildings to each other in a landscape. He shapes an environment out of natural and manmade forms together. His buildings adjust their style to the place, always unemphatically enhancing the landscape and disciplined by it....
It has proved a very solid way to make an architectural career, to understand one’s native environment and to love it as well in its fields and rivers as in its towns. It tends to create intrinsically organized new communities that get along with the old ones and can themselves endure, where trees are as important as buildings and everything can age together, growing old and better suited to each other with the passage of the years."
Peter Gisolfi was an architect, landscape architect, and teacher whose primary focus was to shape places—usually groups of buildings connected by open space. Most of the work is “contextual,” based on a careful understanding of regional climate and traditions. His building and landscape designs are intrinsically sustainable and beautifully crafted; they are adapted to the environment and fit gently into their natural and man-made settings.