William Craft Brumfield is a contemporary American historian of Russian architecture, a preservationist and an architectural photographer. Brumfield is currently Professor of Slavic studies at Tulane University.
Brumfield grew up in the deep American South, where he became interested in Russia by reading Russian novels. After receiving a BA from Tulane University in 1966 and an MA from the University of California, Berkeley in 1968, he arrived in the former Soviet Union for the first time in 1970 as a graduate student starting work in architectural photography, although he did not seriously study the craft of photography until 1974. Brumfield earned a Ph.D in Slavic studies at the University of California, Berkeley in 1973 and held a position of assistant professor at Harvard University in 1974â€“1980.
In 1983 Brumfield, formerly a generalist of Slavic studies, established himself in history of architecture with his first book, Gold in azure: one thousand years of Russian architecture. It was followed by The Origins of Modernism in Russian Architecture, Russian housing in the modern age: design and social history, A History of Russian Architecture, Lost Russia: Photographing the Ruins of Russian Architecture, Landmarks of Russian Architecture: A Photographic Survey and Commerce in Russian urban culture: 1861-1914.