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Designer Michael Graves speaks at Lawrence Tech Oct. 27

Release Date: October 13, 2010

SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Oct. 13, 2010– Architect and product designer Michael Graves will give a free lecture at Lawrence Technological University on Wednesday, Oct. 27, in conjunction with a course taught by pioneer retail developer A. Alfred Taubman and a fund-raiser for the Lawrence Tech chapter of the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS).

The lecture will be at 7 p.m. in the Architecture Building auditorium at 21000 West Ten Mile Road in Southfield. It is free and open to the public. The AIAS fund-raising reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. 

Graves has been in the forefront of architecture and design since he founded his practice in 1964. Michael Graves & Associates provides architecture and interior design services, and Michael Graves Design Group specializes in product design and graphic design. The firms are based in Princeton, N.J., and New York City.

Critic Paul Goldberger, writing in The New York Times, called Graves, “truly the most original voice in American architecture.”

His architectural practice has designed over 350 projects worldwide, including large-scale master plans, corporate headquarters and other office buildings, hotels and resorts, restaurants and retail stores, facilities for sports and recreation, healthcare facilities, civic projects such as embassies, courthouses and monuments, a wide variety of university buildings, museums, theaters and public libraries, housing and single-family residences.

The product design practice has designed over 2,000 products for home, office and personal use, as well as building components such as lighting, hardware, bath and kitchen products. Strategic partnerships include Target stores and manufacturers such as Stryker, Steuben, Dansk, Disney, and Delta Faucet. MGDG has also designed innovative packaging and graphic identity programs.

Graves and his firms have received over 200 awards for design excellence. In 2001, the American Institute of Architects awarded Michael Graves its Gold Medal, the highest award bestowed upon an individual architect. He also received the 1999 National Medal of Arts from President Bill Clinton.

A native of Indianapolis, Graves received his architectural training at the University of Cincinnati and Harvard University. In 1960, he won the Rome Prize and studied at the American Academy in Rome for two years. In 1962, Graves began a nearly 40-year teaching career at Princeton University.

Earlier on Oct. 27, Graves will deliver a guest lecture in Lawrence Tech’s graduate-level course, “Real Estate Practice: Land Economics,” which is taught during the fall semester by Taubman.

At a reception at 5:30 p.m., Graves and Taubman will participate in an autograph session in the Architecture Building gallery as part of an AIAS silent auction to raise money for Freedom By Design, an ongoing student project to make homes of handicapped people more accessible and functional. A public afterglow reception will follow the lecture at 8:15 p.m.

Tickets for the reception include the autograph session, reserved seating for the lecture, reserved parking, and hors d’oeuvres. Ticket prices are $35 per person or $25 each for groups of four or more. To order tickets, contact Mary Johnson at (248) 204-2807 or

Selected items in the silent auction will be available to attendees of the reception only, with the remaining items open to public bidding during the afterglow. Silent auction items include:

  • Lunch with Taubman at his office designed by Graves and a tour led by Taubman of one of his properties.
  • Dinner for eight at the residence of architect Jim Ryan, including a tour of his museum-quality Art Nouveau collection.
  • A round of golf for two at Oakland Hills with Carl Roehling of the Smith Group and Dean of Architecture and Design Glen LeRoy.

Lawrence Technological University,, offers more than 100 undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degree programs in Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering and Management. Founded in 1932, the 4,500-student, private university pioneered evening classes and today has a growing number of weekend and online programs. Lawrence Tech’s 102-acre campus is in Southfield, and programs are also offered in Detroit, Lansing, Petoskey and Traverse City. Lawrence Tech also offers programs with partner universities in Canada, Mexico, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.