Marlon Blackwell, FAIA practices architecture in Fayetteville, Arkansas, and serves as Distinguished Professor and Department Head in the School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas. Working outside the architectural mainstream, his architecture is based in design strategies that celebrate vernaculars, that draw upon them, and that seek to transgress conventional boundaries for architecture. Work produced in his professional office, Marlon Blackwell Architect, has received national and international recognition, numerous AIA design awards and significant publication in books, architectural journals and magazines including Architectural Record (with the honor of having the Keenan TowerHouse featured on the cover of the February 2001 issue), Architect, Arquine, A+U, Detail, Dwell, Metropolitan Home, Contract, Residential Architect, the Phaidon Atlas of Contemporary Architecture (2004 & 2008) and Architectural Review (2002 ar + d prize winner for the Moore HoneyHouse and a 2010 Housing Citation for the PorchDog House).
"For Blackwell, buildings are generators of and frames for experience. Profound and touching architectural experiences arise from the tectonic realities of construction, truthful materiality, and the existential charge of the imagery, not from fictitious pictorial fabrications."
The significance of his contributions to design is evidenced by the publication of a monograph of his work entitled “An Architecture of the Ozarks: The Works of Marlon Blackwell” published by Princeton Architectural Press in 2005. Marlon was selected by The International Design Magazine, in 2006, as one of the ID Forty: Undersung Heroes and as an “Emerging Voice” in 1998 by the Architectural League of New York.
At the University of Arkansas he has co-taught design studios with Peter Eisenman (1997 & 1998), Christopher Risher (2000) and Julie Snow (2003). He has been a visiting professor teaching graduate design at MIT in Cambridge, Massachusetts in Spring 2001 and 2002. Most recently, he was the Elliel Saarinen Visiting Professor at the University of Michigan. He also has served as the Ivan Smith Distinguished Professor at the University of Florida (Spring 2009) and the Paul Rudolph Visiting Professor at Auburn University (Spring 2008) and the Cameron Visiting Professor at Middlebury College (Fall 2007). In the Spring of 2003, he was the Ruth and Norman Moore Visiting Professor at Washington University in St. Louis and has also been a visiting professor at Syracuse University (1991-92).
In 1994, he co-founded the University of Arkansas Mexico Summer Urban Studio, and has coordinated and taught in the program at the Casa Luis Barragan in Mexico City since 1996.
He received his undergraduate degree from Auburn University in 1980 and a M. Arch II degree from Syracuse University in Florence in 1991.