Tulane School of Architecture Professor Emerita Elizabeth Gamard (1958-2017) passed away on June 26 at her home in New Lebanon, New York of natural causes.
Gamard was an integral part of the Tulane School of Architecture during her 17-year tenure. She influenced the lives of countless students while serving in the roles of associate professor and associate dean. Upon retirement in 2014, Gamard was granted emerita status.
“We are greatly saddened by the loss of Elizabeth,” said Dean Ken Schwartz. “Her lasting impact on students and alumni is testament to her dedication to the school and profession. She was a gifted teacher and a tireless advocate for students.”
An accomplished educator and scholar, Gamard received numerous teaching accolades during her career. She also published multiple works, including, “Kurt Schwitters’ Merzbau: The Cathedral of Erotic Misery.” She was a proud alumna of Yale University and taught at several schools of architecture throughout her academic career.
The Tulane School of Architecture is thankful for Professor Emerita Gamard’s many contributions and the time she spent with us. A number of former students are organizing an initiative in her honor. More information will follow.
A full obituary provided by the family is below.
Elizabeth Burns Gamard
Elizabeth Burns Gamard died unexpectedly of natural causes at her home in New Lebanon, New York on June 26, 2017 at the age of 58.
Elizabeth is survived by her daughter Sarah Gamard, sister Maryjoyce Burns and brothers John Keenan Burns, Jr. and Christopher Burns. She is preceded in death by her mother Betty Lorraine Yates Burns and her father John Keenan Burns, Sr.
Elizabeth was born on October 4, 1958 in Meriden, Connecticut. She spent much of her early life in Chatham, Massachusetts on Cape Cod. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1981 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, after which she graduated from Yale University in 1984 with a Master of Architecture Degree. Elizabeth has been the recipient of numerous grants, teaching awards and fellowships throughout her long and accomplished career as an educator in the field of architecture and design. Early in her career she was employed as an assistant professor at the University of Cincinnati, the University of Florida at Gainesville and Rice University before moving to New Orleans in 1997, where she earned a tenured position at Tulane University, serving as both Associate Professor and Associate Dean of the School of Architecture. Her pedagogical focus has been in the fields of design, history, theory, criticism and thesis direction. She is the author of the book Kurt Schwitters’ Merzbau published in 1999 in addition to countless journal articles, lectures and written works.
Elizabeth is remembered fondly with love and affection by family, friends, students and colleagues alike. She was known for her brilliance, her strength, her enthusiasm, her generosity, her creativity and her passionate love for academia. She was many things to many people; a loving and devoted mother, an artist, a rebel, a good friend, a true bohemian, a free spirit, a poet, a brilliant thinker, a respected professor and a scholar. She was tough and tenacious, the proud daughter of a Navy fighter pilot. She was a devoted fan of Neil Young and a lover of history, philosophy, art, poetry and life in all its forms. She will be dearly missed by all who knew her.
A private memorial service will be held on Cape Cod later this year in Elizabeth’s honor. Details will be announced at a later date through social media. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts (NOCCA) at www.nocca.com.