Published: Nov 15, 2011
SAVANNAH, Georgia - The Savannah College of Art and Design announces Christian Sottile, AIA, as the new dean of the School of Building Arts
. Sottile will oversee the undergraduate and graduate departments of architectural history
, furniture design
, historic preservation
, interior design
and urban design
Alongside his Savannah-based urban design firm, which focuses on civic design and master planning, emphasizing historic research, urban analysis and community-wide engagement, Sottile has been a professor of architecture and urban design at SCAD since 1999. Most recently, Sottile led the design of the new SCAD Museum of Art
, a provocative historic preservation project that revived the freight sheds of the Central of Georgia Railroad complex, a National Historic Landmark and the only extant antebellum railroad complex in the country.
"The museum project manifests what we do at SCAD's School of Building Arts," says Sottile. "It dissolves perceived boundaries between design disciplines - architecture, interior design, urban design - and expands the meaning of historic preservation, where the past isn't necessarily sacred, but part of our future."
On the future of building arts, Sottile says, "The future is the city, where all design disciplines come together, and where all design disciplines are needed at the same time. At SCAD, we are doing nothing less than preparing students in the School of Building Arts to be the designers of the new city."
Sottile holds a Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) from SCAD's School of Building Arts, from which he graduated as valedictorian in 1997, as well as a Master of Architecture and Urban Design (M.Arch. II) from Syracuse University. In between graduate degrees, Sottile pursued extensive urban research in Italy.
Sottile has received numerous awards for his work, including an international Charter Award from the Congress for New Urbanism, awards from the American Planning Association and the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation, a National Honor Award for Urban Design from the American Institute of Architects as well as an Art Leadership and Artist Award from the National Council of Arts Administrators.
"At SCAD, we prepare our students for careers in art and design," says Vice President for Academic Services Gokhan Ozaysin, "and having Christian at the helm of the School of Building Arts models the professional practice we desire for our students."