Architect Steven Holl on the second-floor balcony of Kiasma in 2008
December 9, 1947 |
|Alma mater||University of Washington
Architectural Association School of Architecture
|Awards||Alvar Aalto Medal (1998)
BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award (2008)
AIA Gold Medal (2012)
Praemium Imperiale (2014)
The Daylight and Building Component Award (2016)
|Practice||Steven Holl Architects|
|Buildings||Kiasma Contemporary Art Museum, Helsinki, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Linked Hybrid, Beijing, Knut Hamsun Center, HamarÃ¸y, Norway|
I'm sorry to say, but 85% of so-called 'green' firms make some of the ugliest buildings that were ever made. So for God's sake, I don't want to be categorized with them.
Some architects, such as John Lautner, never really did anything other than houses. His entire portfolio is basically residential. There's nothing wrong with that.
I grew up in a wood cabin on Puget Sound in Manchester, Wash. My family taught me to appreciate the arts and the outdoors, and I still yearn for the absolute silence I experienced there when I was young.
Frank Lloyd Wright made houses right up until the end. I think that's important because it gives you a direct connection to all the basic aspects of architecture – the spatial energy of the place, the construction, the materials, the site, the detail.
You can say I'm not the easiest architect in the world, because I'm always trying to push the limits.
I paint daily with watercolors on 5-by-7-inch pads that are small enough for me to take them everywhere.
Princeton University's campus environment presents unique challenges and opportunities for architecture to act as a social condenser.
I choose work that is hard to pull off. And it's scary how things can go wrong. But if there's no risk involved, it's not challenging. A good idea will survive any process.
The whole notion of an embassy is like 'The Other.' That's what makes Washington interesting.
For me, the excitement in architecture revolves around the idea and the phenomenon of the experience of that idea. Residences offer almost immediate gratification. You can shape space, light, and materials to a degree that you sometimes can't in larger projects.
I think architecture, to be really intense and fulfilling, doesn't have to be large.
My studio cube is an experiment in solar heating and design. The south wall is covered with glass planks that collect and distribute heat naturally to my work studio on the second level.