Dean Maltz AR’84
Dean Maltz is a Managing Partner of Shigeru Ban Architects, an award-winning, international architectural firm led by Shigeru Ban, his longtime friend and business partner of over 40 years. The relationship between Dean and Shigeru began at the Cooper Union School of Architecture (AR 1984). Prior to their graduation, Dean worked in Japan while living in Shigeru Ban’s family home. Dean later went on to earn his M.Arch degree from Harvard Graduate School of Design in 1986.
After gaining work experience at notable architectural firms including Gwathmey Siegel and Eisenman Architects, and starting his own firm in 1990, Dean’s professional affiliation with Shigeru began in 1999 with the construction of the MoMA Paper Arch project. The temporary exhibition was the first structural application of Shigeru Ban’s pioneering use of paper tubes in North America, which utilized a paper tube gridshell structure spanning 87 feet across the museum’s iconic sculpture garden.
For 25 years, Shigeru and Dean have worked together on residential, retail, commercial, cultural, and humanitarian projects to implement innovative design solutions – often using natural, recyclable, and reuseable materials. Through Shigeru Ban Architects, Dean has become a leader in sustainable design and construction.
As Managing Partner of Shigeru Ban Architects’ New York office, Dean is responsible for executing Shigeru’s creative vision for sustainable projects in North and South America, with emphasis on Mass Timber construction – a low carbon alternative to concrete and steel.
A notable example of their humanitarian work together in the United States is the Make It Right House – aka Furniture House 5. Completed in 2009 for the Make It Right Foundation, the low-cost house consisted of structural, prefabricated furniture units deployed in New Orleans for those who lost homes due to Hurricane Katrina. As part of a series of Furniture House prototypes, developed by Shigeru Ban, the furniture unit model has been implemented around the world including Japan, China, and New York since 1995.
Other notable professional projects led by Dean Maltz at Shigeru Ban Architects, from non-traditional public spaces to adaptive reuse housing projects, include: The AIA National Honor Award-winning Aspen Art Museum (2014), The Nomadic Museum (2005), Metal Shutter House (2011) and the Cast Iron House (2021). The Metal Shutter House received a SARA (Society of American Registered Architects) Award in 2012 for its innovative façade. The Cast Iron House has been featured on NBC’s “Open House New York” and CBS’s “America By Design”.
Dean is a vocal proponent for the use of mass timber construction. He is a frequent lecturer and public speaker at venues including: Telluride Art + Architecture, BC Wood Conference, and the American Institute of Architects, Dean advocates for low carbon design practices to reduce carbon emissions that leads to natural disasters due to increased global warming and extreme weather. He has also taught courses at Columbia, Washington University in St. Louis, and Cornell.
Dean is a 2024 recipient of the Peter Cooper Public Service Award.