Christopher C. Miller

Christopher C. Miller, PhD, '14, Arch Registration Virginia

Adjunct Associate Professor

Curriculum Vitae

Christopher C. Miller teaches and researches urbanism, architectural/urban design, and architecture history/theory.

For patrons, architects, and makers, Miller’s current project, Bella Città, recasts the first architectural treatise of the Renaissance along three lines that are hoped to speak to the present. In the midst and aftermath of republican experiments in northern Italian cities, the treatise-writer Alberti adopted a contemporary ideal of a political culture that was distinct from autocratic and clan regimes; for this, he theorizes an architectural representation of civic, or shared-rule, polity. Perhaps current democracies can be supported by buildings made to speak of an inter-dependent web of essential institutions. Secondly, Alberti conceived architectural components as integral to scales of greater scope and as resonating synchronically and diachronically in anticipation of the mid-twentieth-century interest in urban context. Finally, our contemporary attention to affectivity is Alberti’s theorizing of architecture as rhetorical: prudential, sensate judgment gauging the fittedness of ornament to circumstance and calling to our uniquely human vision of beauty.

In an ongoing effort, Miller assists leaders of Classical Christian schools in considering how their buildings and campuses, like analogies of a classical education, can cultivate flourishing formation in their learning communities.

Miller’s research interests range from urban morphology to the history of architectural typology to contemporary theory in architecture. He has introduced the use of predictive tools for sustainable design and the analysis of urban morphology as a generative pattern for building design.

Presentations have included these: at the Society for Classical Learning Winter Symposium (2023), “Science and Art of the Master Plan;” at Baylor’s Symposium on Faith and Culture on Stewardship of Creation (2018), a featured presentation (Stewarding Our Places and Buildings. I.Managing our Goods: Material Resources and Public Health; II.Supporting Our Local Economies; III.Imaging Here and Ultimately the City of God: Considering Civitas a Sacred Endowment); and at the Congress for the New Urbanism (2010), “Visualizing Morphological Conditions for Pedestrian Connectivity.”

Before coming to Notre Dame, Miller collaborated in the neighborhood design and Form-Based Code for Holy Family Shire and in master plans for Heritage Classical Academy (NE Ohio), Covenant School (Huntington, WV), and Heritage Preparatory School (Atlanta) at Glavé & Holmes Architecture, Richmond VA; he was architecture program director at Benedictine; and for twenty years at Judson, he taught upper-level and graduate architecture/urbanism studios as well as courses on the Architecture of the City (originating from Carroll William Westfall’s History of Urban Form course at the University of Virginia) and Conviviality in Architecture (inspired by Illich’s Tools for Conviviality). Miller’s work, and that of his students, has been recognized by the Congress for the New Urbanism, the Congress for the New Urbanism Illinois Chapter, the Congress for the New Urbanism-Members Christian Caucus International Faith & Urban Design Award, and the Institute for Classical Architecture and Art Chicago Chapter for projects in Bath (UK), Gowanus (Brooklyn NY), Lafayette (LA), Orwigsburg (PA), Richmond (VA), Winchester (UK), and Winson Green (Birmingham UK).

He is an amateur plein air watercolorist.

Areas of Expertise

  • Architectural History and Theory
  • Community Building
  • Form-based codes
  • Sustainable Architecture and Urbanism
  • Urban Design
  • Urban design, history, and theory

Recently Taught Courses

ARCH 71131 Architectural Design III

Select Publications

2019 Book review of Murray A. Rae, Architecture and Theology: the Art of Place (Baylor UP, 2017) for the International Journal of Systematic Theology. Special Issue: Place and Space in Systematic Theology 21, 4 (Oct. 2019): 465-68.
2017 "Coding for Community." In Putting Tradition into Practice: Heritage, Place, and Design: Proceedings of the Fifth INTBAU International Annual Event, ed. Giuseppe Amoroso, (Milan: Springer, 2017): 802-10. International Network of Building, Architecture, and Urbanism. Milan.
2015 “The New Urbanism and the Challenge of the New Civic Art,” in Thriving Cities Endowment Brief: the Beautiful. Anna Marazuela Kim, Elizabeth Merrill, Christopher C. Miller, and Christopher S. Yates. Summer 2015. Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, University of Virginia.
2006 "Local Accommodations: Elgin’s Making and the Teaching of Traditional Architecture and Urbanism." In The Teaching of Architecture and Urbanism in the Age of Globalization: Council of European Urbanism and International Network of Building, Architecture, and Urbanism Meeting: 5-9 May 2004, Portugal (Lisboa, Viseu, Tomar), edited by J. Baganha. Caleidoscópio Edição e Artes Grãficas, S.A., 2006.
2004 "Sizing Style: Commercial Architecture in Cities." In Città Commercio Architettura: Proceedings of the Vision of Europe Triennale IV Bologna, edited by Alessandro Bucci, and Donatella Diolaiti, 338-49. Bologna: Alinea Editrice, 2004.

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