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Influential architect Dick Clark helped define the look of Austin

Lauded, sought-after designer dead at age 72

City View Residence
Paul Bardagjy

Note: This article has been updated.

Architect Dick Clark, a longtime and lauded local professional who made a profound impact on Austin design and development, has died, the Austin American-Statesman reported Tuesday.

Clark, who was 72, died of complications from pneumonia and had been battling leukemia, the paper added.

Founded in 1979, Dick Clark + Associates (originally Dick Clark Architecture) was a high-profile, sought-after firm with a distinctive, modern style that has had a notable impact on the way Austin looks today.

Clark’s commercial work includes South Congress Hotel, downtown affordable housing community Capital Studios, and the 1400 Congress retail center, among many other community spaces. The firm also designed such landmark local bars and restaurants as Lonesome Dove, Maiko, and Little Woodrow’s.

Born in Dallas, Clark received bachelor’s degrees in architecture and business administration from University of Texas at Austin in 1969 and went on to receive a master’s degree of architecture from Harvard University's Graduate School of Design in 1972. He received the prestigious peer-sponsored and -elected title of Fellow from the AIA in 2013.

Clark and his firm also brought his unique form of contemporary architecture, sometimes rustically inflected with the local and regional vernacular, to numerous city residences, with such AIA-recognized designs as the Possum Trot home and the Bevel House, the latter representative of his later work, which often featured dramatic, panoramic views of Austin’s skyline.

The firm also went afield occasionally, designing and building a water- and solar-energy-collecting basketball court in Kenya and, of all things, a restaurant in Dallas.

Modern/contemporary two-story home
Possum Trot House
Via Dick Clark + Associates
Bevel House
Via Dick Clark + Associates
Mt. Bonnell
Paul Bardagjy

Clark’s lasting influence on certain areas of the city—particularly the Warehouse District, South Congress, and Hill Country residential neighborhoods—is particularly notable.

Lake Travis House
Paul Bardagjy
Nightcap
Paul Bardagjy
2012 Rainwater Court
Nobelity Project

Clark’s philanthropic and continued academic support of students at the UT School of Architecture have also had a big impact on the city’s design community and growth. He lent his talents and resources to a number of humanitarian causes, including extensive contributions to such Texas-based nonprofits as the Nobelity Project, which works for basic children's rights everywhere, and The Miracle Foundation, dedicated to empowering orphans to reach their full potential.

white man gray hair and beard black T-shirt half smile vespa
Dick Clark on his Vespa, 2016

Fittingly, the Dick Clark website currently features a brief but touching farewell and a humor-tinged tally of accomplishments: “2.3 million square feet constructed | 36 Austin summers | 65 awards earned | 1.1 million tacos eaten.”

Details on a memorial service are forthcoming. Memorial contributions may be made to The Nobelity Project, 1002-B West Avenue, Austin, TX 78701. Messages of condolence can be sent to welovedick@dcarch.com

Renowned Austin architect Dick Clark dead at 72 [AAS]