18 July 2018
18 July 2018
HansonLA, Los Angeles: Curious, Collaborative, Excellence.
The Culture of Practice
Douglas Hanson has worked with some of the world’s leading architects and architectural firms – Mr Hanson was named project architect for the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao while working for Gehry Partners, before that he worked with Bruce Graham of Skidmore, Owings and Merill on internationl projects in London and Barcelona. His experience encompasses cultural, multidisciplinary collaborations, large-scale residential and mixed-use projects, as well as modestly scaled commercial and retail projects.
HansonLA fosters a silo-free practice culture, which has a direct impact on the organisational layout. “It’s really just everybody working together. And our process is on display more so than hanging fancy pictures on the wall,” says Hanson.
Located in the heart of Downtown LA’s historic core, they are positioned at the nexus of a fast-changing neighbourhood in flux. “You can open the window and feel that. There’s something about those tactile things that I really cue off,” says Hanson. “We are at this convergence. That urban vibe is always something that registers and having that diversity is something we pick up on.”
Being able to dive right in and take on as much responsibility as you can handle at any age is something that truly defines the practice culture. The people that come here really get to draw and build something. “You have a front row seat here to the whole process. We’re a small enough office that you see what’s going on everywhere.” The firm’s diverse staff comes from every corner of the globe. “I’ve always had an office like that. We’re lucky here in LA,” says Hanson. What you also get is Hanson’s historical trajectory and the people he’s worked with floating around in the air. “I feel I’ve had these amazing mentors through my profession that leaks out into this group of people,” explains Hanson.
With a quarterly dinner and a breakfast club on Fridays, HansonLA takes good care of its team. The 16-mile walk to the beach they do each year gets people out onto the streets. “It’s meant to be a solo journey. I tell people to just look at the built city,”says Hanson.
Author: Kat Hall, Marketing Assistant, Bespoke Careers