Andrew Witt

Associate Professor in Practice of Architecture

Andrew Witt is an Associate Professor in Practice in Architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design, teaching and researching on the relationship of geometry and machines to perception, design, construction, and culture. Trained as both an architect and mathematician, he has a particular interest in a technically synthetic and logically rigorous approach to form.

Witt is also co-founder, with Tobias Nolte, of Certain Measures, a Boston/Berlin-based design and technology studio that combines imagination and evidence for systemic and scalable approaches to spatial problems. Their clients include large manufacturers, material fabricators, government agencies, infrastructure companies, investment funds, medical startups, and cultural institutions. The work of Certain Measures is in the permanent collection of the Centre Pompidou, and has been exhibited at the Pompidou (twice), the Barbican Centre, Futurium, and Haus der Kulturen der Welt, among others. Witt’s personal work has been featured at the Storefront for Art and Architecture. In 2017 Certain Measures were finalists for the Zumtobel Award in both the Young Professionals and Applied Innovation Categories.

Witt has a longstanding research interest in the disciplinary exchanges between design and science, particularly through the media and visualizations of mathematics. He is the author of Formulations: Architecture, Mathematics, Culture (MIT Press, 2021), an expansive examination of the visual, methodological, and epistemic connections between design, mathematics, and the broader sciences. He is also author of Light Harmonies: The Rhythmic Photographs of Heinrich Heidersberger (Hatje Cantz, 2014), the first English treatment of German proto-computational photographic hacker Heinrich Heidersberger’s light-drawing machines. For the Canadian Centre for Architecture he has authored Studies in the Design Laboratory, a trilogy of case studies that examine how and why architects who developed laboratories in the 1960s and 1970s and what these laboratories reveal about the cultural research practices of design.

He is a fellow of the Canadian Centre for Architecture and Macdowell, a Graham Foundation and Harvard Data Science Initiative grantee, a World Frontiers Forum Pioneer (2018) and Young Pioneer (2017), and a 2015 nominee for the Chernikov Prize. Witt has lectured widely, including at the Venice Biennale, Library of Congress, Yale, Princeton, MIT, The Bartlett, The Berlage, Stanford, UCLA, Berkeley, ETH, and EPFL, and his research has been published in venues such as AD, Log, Project, Detail, Harvard Design Magazine, e-Flux, Surface, Space, Linear Algebra and its Applications, and Linear and Multilinear Algebra, and Issues in Science and Technology. He has been awarded a number of patents, including for geometric rationalizations of complex geometry and large-scale collaborative software systems.

Witt was previously Director of Research at Gehry Technologies and a director at GT’s Paris, France office, where he solved complex geometric challenges for clients including Gehry Partners, Ateliers Jean Nouvel, UN Studio, and Coop Himmelb(l)au, and projects such as Fondation Louis Vuitton and Louvre Abu Dhabi. He also developed prototypes for new software design tools such as GTeam (now Trimble Connect, acquired by Trimble in 2014).

Witt received an M.Arch (with distinction, AIA medal, John E. Thayer Scholarship) and an M.Des (History and Theory, with distinction) from Harvard GSD. He has an Erdős number of 3.