• Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.
      Learn about the conditions that led to Frank Furness' most incredible masterworks, including the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts seen here, on Wednesday.

Robert Venturi retires, VSBA is born

  • Part of Venturi Scott Brown's ghost house at Franklin Court. | connery.cepeda, via Flickr, Creative Commons License


Postmodern architect Robert Venturi announced his retirement after more than 50 years in professional practice. With Venturi's retirement comes a new day for the firm he cofounded with his wife and partner Denise Scott Brown: Venturi, Scott Brown and Associates will now be known simply as VSBA.

Venturi's playful appreciation of ordinary, even ugly buildings turned pure modernists and traditionalists into critics alike. In 1991 Venturi was awarded the Pritzker Prize, architecture's highest honor, for his theoretical writings as much as his design work worldwide.

Robert Venturi's design imprint on Philadelphia, his native city, spans decades including early works like the poppy Guild House on Spring Garden Street, and the famous Chestnut Hill house he designed for his mother, Vanna Venturi. My personal favorite Venturi Scott Brown work is Franklin Court, an interpretation of the archaeological remains of Benjamin Franklin's property complete with ghost buildings to suggest what once stood on the site in Old City.

VSBA, LLC is now led by president and principal Daniel McCoubrey and fellow principal (and Planning Commissioner) Nancy Rogo Trainer.

We hope that in retirement, Mr. Venturi, less is not a bore.

For a complete list of past projects A-to-Z visit venturiscottbrown.org.

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