From 1924 to 1952, Ivan Lazarov was a professor at the State Academy of Art in Sofia and four times its director. In 1941, he was elected a full member of the BAS.
Ivan Lazarov was also engaged in research work. His numerous studies on various aesthetic issues and his articles related to the history of Bulgarian art were included in the 1967 collection, ‘Ivan Lazarov on Art’. In 1949, he became the first director of the newly established Institute of Art Studies at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences and remained as such for the rest of his life.