Acclaimed architect, master planner, and professor Maxim Atayants, Ph.D., addressed the TASIS community in the fourth installment of the 2015-2016 Senior Humanities Program on the evening of April 12. His presentation, "Roman Palmyra Past & Present," was held in the Palmer Center and can be viewed in full by clicking on the video clip above.
Dr. Atayants graduated from the St. Petersburg, Russia, Academy of Fine Arts in 1995 and completed his Ph.D. at this Academy in 2010. His Ph.D. thesis topic is The Architecture of the North African Provinces of the Roman Empire, a subject on which he is presently the foremost expert in the world. As its star student, Mr. Atayants was then appointed professor of Ancient Architecture (Mesopotamia and Egypt) and the Architecture of Classical Antiquity (Greece and Rome) at the Academy, a required course for those preparing to be architects. He has directed his own architectural studio within the Academy for 16 years, received the Prince of Wales prize in 1994, and has participated in numerous international symposiums and architectural conferences dealing with the subject of classical architecture.
Dr. Atayants’ exhibitions to date include a one-person exhibition at the Russian State Museum of Architecture in Moscow in 2008, which included a comprehensive catalog of his photographs and drawings of Roman architecture of the Provinces. His stated goal is to document, both photographically and in drawings, the Roman Imperial architecture of the Mediterranean world in a definitive way: a project he has well begun and which will occupy most of his professional career.
Dr. Atayants was the master planner for the architecture of Russia's 2014 Olympic village at Sochi, on the Black Sea. As a practicing architect and master planner, he has 25 architects working under him on various projects. In addition to this, Dr. Atayants has five residential villages under construction in the Moscow area, and he is also overseeing a new Cathedral in the St. Petersburg area. He is also a master in mural painting in the Pompeiian style and was a member of the Jury for the Vision of Europe project in Brussels in 2009.
The Senior Humanities Program (SHP) draws from five defining elements of the TASIS identity—truth, beauty, goodness, international understanding, and humanitarian action—to provide seniors and postgraduates with a signature educational experience that includes a series of discussions, trips, lectures, and tours throughout the year. The SHP Committee selects up to five speakers each year who embody the pillars of the program. Dr. Atayants, who was also the very first SHP speaker at TASIS when the program was founded in 2010, follows visits from Barry Iverson (September 28), Maria José Pereira (October 22), and Shelley Davies (November 30).