Taubman College

Faculty Directory

Teaching Areas:

  • Design
  • Technology

Karl Daubmann is an Associate Professor of Architecture at the Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning at the University of Michigan. He teaches design and seminars in digital media, fabrication, multidisciplinary design, and interactive design. Daubmann also holds a courtesy appointment in the School or Art and Design. He has also taught at the Boston Architectural Center, Roger Williams University, and the University of Cincinnati. Daubmann received his bachelor of architecture from Roger Williams University and a master of science in architectural studies from Massachusetts Institute of Technology where his concentration was in design computing.

Issues of craft, materiality, and technology were all ambient in the small fabrication shop where Daubmann grew up, making these values tangible. He learned how to operate a boom crane and use computer-controlled equipment long before he could drive a car. To this day he makes no distinction between the computer and the crane, both extensions of the body, both able to amplify the designer's dexterity.

In addition to teaching, Daubmann is a registered architect and makes it an imperative to practice. Interests in design technology, manufacturing, and multidisciplinary design led to his current position as Vice President of Design and Creative Director for Blu Homes with offices in Boston, San Francisco, and Ann Arbor. In this capacity Daubmann oversees design while in direct conversation with marketing, sales, engineering, and manufacturing. Blu Homes builds modern, green, prefab houses that fold for shipping across North America.

As a former partner of PLY Architecture for more than 10 years, Daubmann co-authored a broad range of work exploring design and construction. The work of PLY has been published nationally and internationally and received awards for both built and speculative projects. In this capacity, Daubmann was a recipient of the Architectural League of New York, Young Architects Award; the 2010 Architect Magazine's R+D Award for architectural research; a national AIA 2010 Small Project Practitioners Award; and 6 State of Michigan AIA Awards. In 2007, PLY was named one of "101 of the World's most exciting new architects" by Wallpaper* Magazine.

Daubmann's work in both practice and research investigates the role of digital technology on design, originally through simulation of real world phenomena and more recently through techniques of digital fabrication and methods for the description of complex form. Daubmann maintains the ParaMod.Net blog that hosts video tutorials and project excerpts illustrating technological preoccupations. His writings have been included in Future Wood – Innovation in Building Design + Manufacturing, Fabrications, and Smart Graphics – American Association for Artificial Intelligence.

Registered Architect: Michigan, New York, Washington State, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island

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