Stephen Zacks


Stephen Zacks is an internationally recognized architecture and urbanism reporter, theorist, and cultural producer based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and a native of Flint, Michigan.

He received an M.A. in Liberal Studies from the New School for Social Research, a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Humanities with Honors from Michigan State University, served as an editor at Metropolis, and has received awards from the NY State Council on the Arts, Newtown Creek Fund, Graham Foundation, ArtPlace, MacDowell Colony, and the Warhol Foundation. Founder and executive director of Flint Public Art Project and co-founder of the Bring to Light–Nuit Blanche New York festival, he is currently writing A Beautiful Ruin: The Generation that Transformed New York, 1967-1986, a nonfiction narrative about New York during the mid-70s fiscal crisis (Inventory Books/ Princeton Architectural Press, 2014).

A journalist trained in cultural studies, political and social science, and philosophy, he applies a pragmatic standard to reporting on art, architecture, and urbanism. Zacks has contributed to the New York Times, Monocle, Village Voice, Popular Science, Metropolis, Architectural Record, Print, The Architect's Newspaper, Blueprint, TARP Architecture Manual, and RIPP Magazine. His international reporting includes coverage of Israeli architecture in the West Bank, master planning in Dubai, landmarks preservation in Kosovo, the no-man's land in Nicosia, public art in Panama, the graphic resistance in Serbia, and political art in South Korea.

As a Metropolis editor from 2005 to 2009, he reported on Steven Holl's Nelson-Atkins Museum addition in Kansas City, housing policy in New York, Stefan Behnisch's high-performance architecture in Germany, and profiled regional architects like Rand Elliott in Oklahoma City, Jeanne Gang in Chicago, Phil Freelon in North Carolina, MC2 in Houston, and Peter Gluck in New York.

Zacks co-directed the Collective: Unconscious performance space on the Lower East Side from 1996 to 2002.