Teddy Cruz is a professor of Public Culture and Urbanization in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of California, San Diego. He is known internationally for his urban research of the Tijuana/San Diego border, advancing border neighborhoods as sites of cultural production from which to rethink urban policy, affordable housing, and public space. Recipient of the Rome Prize in Architecture in 1991, his honors the Ford Foundation Visionaries Award in 2011 and the 2013 Architecture Award from the US Academy of Arts and Letters.
Fonna Forman is a professor of Political Theory and Founding Director of the Center on Global Justice at the University of California, San Diego. Her work engages issues at the intersection of ethics, public culture, urban policy and the city - including human rights at the urban scale, climate justice, border ethics and equitable urbanization. She is best known for her revisionist research on 18th century economist Adam Smith, recuperating the ethical, social, spatial and public dimensions of his thought. Forman serves as Vice-Chair of the University of California Climate Solutions Group and its Bending the Curve report on climate change; and on the Global Citizenship Commission (advising UN policy on human rights).
Cruz + Forman are principals in Estudio Teddy Cruz + Fonna Forman, a research-based political and architectural practice in San Diego, investigating issues of informal urbanization, civic infrastructure and public culture, with a special emphasis on Latin American cities. Blurring conventional boundaries between theory and practice, and transgressing the fields of architecture and urbanism, political theory and urban policy, visual arts and public culture, Cruz + Forman lead variety of urban research agendas and civic / public interventions in the San Diego-Tijuana border region and beyond. From 2012-13 they served as special advisors on civic and urban initiatives for the City of San Diego and led the development of its Civic Innovation Lab. Together they founded the UCSD Cross-Border Initiative, and the UCSD Community Stations, a platform for engaged research and teaching on poverty and social equity in the border region.
Their work has been exhibited widely in prestigious cultural venues across the world, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; the Cooper Hewitt National Design Museum, New York; Das Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; the Medellín Museum of Modern Art; M+ Hong Kong and the 2016 Shenzhen Biennial of Urbanism and Architecture, among others; and has been profiled widely in important publications including Domus, ArtForum, The New York Times, Next City, and e-flux, and important collections on urbanism and art published by Harvard University Press, Oxford University Press and MIT Press, among others. With Helge Mooshammer and Peter Mortenböck they co-edited Informal Market Worlds Reader: The Architecture of Economic Pressure (Rotterdam: nai010); and have two forthcoming monographs: Top-Down / Bottom-Up: The Research and Practice of Estudio Teddy Cruz + Fonna Forman (Berlin: Hatje Cantz); and The Political Equator: Unwalling Citizenship (London: Verso)
Their work has been funded by the Ford Foundation, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, ArtPlace America, the PARC Foundation, the San Diego Foundation, and the Surdna Foundation, among others.