Olson Kundig is a full-service design firm providing integrated architecture, exhibit design, interior design, urban design and landscape architecture for clients around the world. The firm’s design approach is grounded in the belief that buildings can act as bridges between culture, nature and people, and that inspiring surroundings can positively affect every aspect of our daily lives.
Rooted in the Pacific Northwest, the firm’s work—commercial and mixed-use buildings, museums, cultural and civic centers, residences, and hospitality projects—extends worldwide. The firm is led by five owners—Jim Olson, FAIA; Tom Kundig, FAIA, RIBA; Kirsten R. Murray, FAIA; Alan Maskin; and Kevin Kudo-King, AIA, LEED® AP—who are supported by twelve principals, fifteen associates, and a staff of approximately 190 in the historic Pioneer Square neighborhood of downtown Seattle. The firm also maintains a workspace in New York City. The in-house interiors studio, founded in 2000, provides a full range of services, including material selection, custom furniture design, and purchasing capabilities. The landscape design studio provides in-house design services dedicated to artfully integrating nature and the built environment.
The firm began its creative existence in 1966 with the architect Jim Olson, whose work at that time centered on explorations of the relationship between dwellings and the landscapes they inhabit. Over the more than five decades of its existence, the firm has grown and broadened its expertise far beyond the residences for which it is still best known. It consciously devotes a consistent energy and enthusiasm to every project, no matter whether the task at hand is a cabin in the woods or a high-rise in Seoul. Every finished project manifests a “macro to micro” level of attention, from the big ideas to the smallest details, giving coherence to the entire experience of the built site.
The geographical scope of the work has grown to cover more than fifteen countries on five continents, in locations ranging from the rural landscapes of Montana and Idaho to dense urban contexts in Manhattan and Mumbai. But no matter the situation, the same philosophies—for instance a careful consideration of the environment, attunement to local materials and culture, and seeking out the expertise and contributions of craftspeople, artists, and other outside experts—continue to apply to each new undertaking.
Among the firm’s accolades are the 2009 National AIA Architecture Firm Award (as Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects); dozens of national and regional design awards from the American Institute of Architects and the International Interior Design Association; American Architecture Awards from the Chicago Athenaeum; Jim Olson’s 2007 Seattle Medal of Honor; and Tom Kundig’s National Design Award in Architecture Design from the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum and his Academy Award in Architecture from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. For four years, the firm has been named one of the Top Ten Most Innovative Companies in Architecture by Fast Company.
Examples of Projects
- Shinsegae International, Seoul, South Korea
- The Century Project for the Space Needle, Seattle, WA
- Martin's Lane Winery, Kelowna, BC, Canada
- Sawmill, Tehachapi, CA
- 100 Stewart Hotel & Apartments, Seattle, WA
- City Cabin, Seattle, WA
- JW Marriott Los Cabos Beach Resort & Spa, Puerto Los Cabos, Mexico
- Delta Shelter, Mazama, WA
- Cabin at Longbranch, Longbranch, WA
- Tofino Beach House, Tofino, BC, Canada