Contact InformationTelephone: 434-924-1006
architectural theory, urbanism and sustainability
In her teaching, research and practice, Crisman focuses on the design of sustainable relationships between specific cultures and built environments. She has developed a model of engaged design research to test abstract ideas and create more sustainable communities. Employing ecological and cultural sustainability strategies across multiple scales, she investigates complex relationships between human inhabitation, environmental restoration, and sustainability education. Crisman has extended this research to the international context through her India Initiative research and teaching, which focuses on the specific challenges and opportunites found in the emerging megacities and enduring villages of the Indian subcontinent. This research works across scales from the city to the architectural detail. One aspect of her work engages fragmentary and overlooked places, processes and materials. Crisman explores eco-effective design strategies that incorporate complex infrastructure systems, greater land use density, site specificity and community engagement. She explored these issues in the Urban Bridges project by designing a series of sustainable, high-density bridge buildings over the Massachusetts Turnpike in Boston. Crisman began this agenda while transforming a 27-building abandoned industrial complex into the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA) with Bruner/Cott & Associates.Recently she has completed an intertwined series of projects focused on sustainable strategies for the co-existence of waterfront industry and ecological regeneration along Virginia's Elizabeth River.