075: Running a Global Multi-generational Practice with Tom Kundig



What a corker of an interview this was! What a delight and absolute pleasure to be speaking to an archi-hero of mine, Tom Kundig the principal and owner of the Seattle-based firm Olson Kundig Architects.

Tom’s honours include some of the highest design awards, including a 2008 National Design Award in Architecture Design from the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt; a 2007 Academy Award in Architecture from The American Academy of Arts and Letters; selection as a finalist for the 2005 National Design Award for Architecture; a MacDowell Colony Fellowship; and selection as an Emerging Architect by the Architectural League of New York. He has also received eleven National American Institute of Architects awards. In 2011, he was included in The Wallpaper* 150, Wallpaper (magazine)’s list of the 150 people who have most influenced, inspired and improved the way we live, work and travel over the last 15 years.

In this conversation Tom discusses:
– how a practice of 200 still produces some of world’s most extraordinary private residences and the importance of that work within the practice
– what is a good client and how to find them, in his words ‘The whole industry is about finding good clients’
– the complexity of branding a cross generational design practice with multiple distinct architectural voices

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