The New City Critics program aims to empower new, fearless, and diverse voices to challenge the ways we design, plan, and develop our cities.
New City Critics will be a two-year fellowship program, initially supporting four critics from underrepresented backgrounds to engage issues of architecture, planning, and urban development. The fellowship will support the development of emerging writers and cultural producers through mentorship opportunities, research guidance, guest lectures, networking, and production of new critical projects in Urban Omnibus and other leading publications.
Participants will be compensated for their participation and provided an additional travel stipend. The program will be overseen by an Advisory Board of leading writers, editors, and photographers who will assist in identifying potential candidates, selecting fellows, developing the curriculum, connecting to guest speakers, and supporting candidates as they pursue future opportunities.
Through this fellowship, we aim to drive change in the culture of criticism. In addition to supporting these four participants, we look forward to launching public programs and other channels that introduce new voices and create a more expansive conversation on the future of cities.
We thank our founding donors for supporting us in launching this fellowship.
The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts
Eric Owen Moss
Charles H. Revson Foundation
Zach Mortice and Maria Speiser
Carol and Mark Willis
Mary Margaret Jones
Eva Franch i Gilabert
K. Emma Ng
This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
This project is also supported by Critical Minded, an initiative to invest in cultural critics of color cofounded by The Nathan Cummings Foundation and The Ford Foundation.
Help us make New City Critics possible by becoming a founding donor today.
Garnette Cadogan is the Tunney Lee Distinguished Lecturer in Urbanism at the School of Architecture and Planning at MIT.
Dario Calmese made history as the first Black photographer to shoot a cover for Vanity Fair with his portrait of Viola Davis. He hosts the radio series The Institute of Black Imagination.
Vinson Cunningham is a staff writer and a theatre critic at The New Yorker. A former White House staffer, he now teaches in the MFA Writing program at Sarah Lawrence College.
Sukjong Hong is the editor of Curbed and was previously managing editor and web editor at the Architect’s Newspaper and a reporter-researcher at the New Republic.
Carolina A. Miranda is a Los Angeles Times columnist covering art, architecture and urban design, along with various other facets of culture in Los Angeles.
New City Critics is founded in honor of Michael Sorkin, a brilliant urbanist, fierce critic, beloved mentor, and world citizen.
Leading Michael Sorkin Studio, Michael championed sustainable design as well as inclusive and spontaneous public spaces. Through the nonprofit design studio Terreform, he imagined alternatives to top down planning projects. He inspired legions of architects and cultural theorists as a Distinguished Professor at City College of New York and other universities. As board member of The Architectural League of New York and founding president of the Urban Design Forum, he balanced generous collegiality with energizing provocation.
His writing and wit enticed the public to consider how architecture shapes society. From his early days as Village Voice architecture critic through his late career as publisher of the Urban Research imprint, he exhorted the design community to embrace social justice. His major works included Exquisite Corpse and Twenty Minutes in Manhattan.
The Architectural League of New York nurtures excellence in architecture, design, and urbanism, and stimulates thinking, debate, and action on the critical design and building issues of our time. Urban Omnibus is The Architectural League’s online publication dedicated to observing, understanding, and shaping the city. Urban Omnibus raises new questions, illuminates diverse perspectives, and documents creative projects to advance the collective work of citymaking. This program will be supported by Rosalie Genevro, executive director; and Mariana Mogilevich, editor-in-chief, Urban Omnibus.
Urban Design Forum mobilizes civic leaders to confront defining issues in the built environment. We are an independent membership organization that empowers professionals of diverse backgrounds, industries and perspectives to shape a better future for all New Yorkers. We investigate complex challenges in the built environment, study alternative approaches from cities around the world, and advance progressive strategies to build a more democratic city. Our history has been shaped by writers including our founder Ann Ferebee and late president Michael Sorkin, both of whom inspired legions of critics and cultural theorists. This program will be supported by Daniel McPhee, executive director; Guillermo Gomez, program director; Janrey Serapio, communications manager; and Tami Hausman, program committee chair.