Takehiko Nagakura

Associate Professor

Takehiko Nagakura is an architect from Tokyo. At MIT, he teaches courses related computer-aided design, and his research focuses on the representation and computation of architectural space and formal design knowledge. He has founded and led Architecture, Representation and Computation group (ARC) since 1996. His built projects include Gushikawa Orchid Center (SD Review Award 1998 and Nikkei New Office Award 1999). His a key advisory member for Arcbazar.com, an online competition platform created to democratize architectural design process through crowdsourcing.

At MIT, Nagakura's academic research focuses on the computational representation of architectural space and formal design knowledge. Inspired by the perspective apparatus Albrecht Durer documented in 1525, Nagakura invented a series of patented interactive visualization device, Digitarama, Deskrama and their augmented reality cousin, Multirama AR. His recent research on digital heritage uses photogrammetric modeling, panoramic videos, game engine, and drones to capture important architectural heritage such as the villas of Andrea Palladio and represent them in a novel interactive format. He heads the project UNBUILT, with research scientist Kent Larson, in which his team has developed computer graphics walk-through visualization of significant early modern unbuilt projects, including Le Corbusier's Palace of Soviet, Giuseppe Terragni's Danteum, and Tatlin's Tower for the Third International. Its outcome has been exhibited in At the End of Century Exhibition in Tokyo Contemporary Art Museum in 1998, Museum of Contemporary Art at Los Angeles in 2000, and other architectural exhibitions in the world.

Before coming to MIT in 1993, Nagakura worked for Fumihiko Maki in Tokyo, and was an instructor at Harvard University, Graduate School of Design. He earned Bachelor of Engineering in Architecture from Tokyo University in 1985, Master of Architecture from Harvard University in 1987, and Master of Engineering in Architecture from Tokyo University in 1988. He completed his PhD at Harvard in 1996, with a dissertation that proposed a computable paradigm for developing designs through recognition of architectural forms and transformations in drawings, and its software implementation is under way.

He is the recipient of the Japan Information Culture Society Grand Prize in 1999.