Discipline: Architecture – text

Cassim Shepard

Discipline: Architecture – text
Region: Brooklyn, NY
MacDowell Fellowships: 2020

Cassim Shepard produces nonfiction media about cities, buildings, and places. As the founding editor-in-chief of Urban Omnibus, an online publication of The Architectural League of New York, he spent six years working with hundreds of local architects, designers, artists, writers, and public servants to share their stories of urban innovation, with a particular emphasis on housing, infrastructure, and the changing nature of cultural institutions. His first book, Citymakers: the Culture and Craft of Practical Urbanism, argues for a redefinition of urbanism inspired by the Urban Omnibus archive of interdisciplinary, public interest work and is rooted in a close reading of the intellectual history of the city. His nonfiction film and video work about cities around the world has been exhibited at venues including the Venice Architecture Biennale, the Museum of the City of New York, the United Nations, the Pavillon de l’Arsenale (Paris), the African Centre for Cities (Cape Town), and the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum.

While at MacDowell, he worked on his next book, Self-Help Housing: Incremental Approaches to Shelter since 1965, which investigates the history of “incrementalism” in international development, architecture, and urban planning as it relates to housing for low-income, urban populations.



Cassim Shepard worked in the Putnam studio.

The Graphics Studio (as it was originally named) was converted to its present use in 1972–1974 through a grant from the Putnam Foundation, and originally served the property as both a power house and pump house. Well water was pumped from a large cistern to Hillcrest, the Foreman’s Cottage, and the lower buildings closer to…

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