Richard Brown, MFA ’75

Norwell, Mass.

Richard Brown is president of Handshouse Studio, Inc., an innovative non-profit organization dedicated to hands-on exploration of history, science, mathematics, literature, arts, culture, and technology.

The group—which Brown co-founded in 1999 with his wife, Laura—works with students, educational institutions, and major media organizations to create exactingly researched and constructed replicas of historic structures. For example, Handshouse currently is leading a two-year international project to build a full-scale replica of the 18th-century Gwozdziec wooden synagogue for the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw.

Other projects have included a massive Egyptian obelisk and a half-scale limestone replica of the Sphinx nose, both featured on PBS’s NOVA; a submarine originally designed during the American Revolution, featured on the Discovery Channel; and a pair of human-powered 18th-century construction cranes

Born in Philadelphia and raised in Roanoke, VA, Brown earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Georgia in 1973; a Master of Fine Arts from Washington University in 1975; and a Master of Architecture from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design in 1987.

A professor at the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston since 1988, he previously taught at the University of Texas, The Ohio State University, and Northeastern University.

Handshouse projects have been exhibited in museums and institutions throughout the United States and Europe. Brown’s numerous honors include a Fulbright Scholarship to Poland and grants from the Ford Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Massachusetts Artists Foundation.

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