31 July 2018
31 July 2018
Morphosis, Los Angeles: Innovation, Inquisitiveness, Collaboration.
The Culture of Practice
Established in 1972, Morphosis is an interdisciplinary practice involved in rigorous design and research that yields innovative, iconic buildings and urban environments. With Founder Thom Mayne serving as Design Director, the firm today consists of a group of more than 60 professionals, who remain committed to the practice of architecture as a collaborative enterprise. With projects worldwide, the firm’s work ranges in scale from residential, institutional, and civic buildings to large urban planning projects.
The office is 100 meters from rapid transit, which is helpful for the burgeoning group of Angelenos who don’t drive, and this being California, there is a garden and an outdoor fireplace as part of the social structure. There is no notion of business, only the creative act, in the open, flexible space, which works much like a Chinese kitchen, where you enter through the state-of-the-art workshop. It sets the cultural tone: open, transparent and egalitarian. By taking you through the back of house first, you’re automatically engaged in an office that has no accommodation for front of office frills. “We make stuff. It’s really straightforward,” says Mayne.
The space is designed to enhance the nature of the work, not status, while a continual reconfiguration of the social order enhances the creative environment. “Design comes out of discourse and conversation,” says Mayne. The ad hoc-ness of the studio is emblematic of a ‘no rules,’ anti-commercial culture that nurtures a group of people working towards a common vision. “We’re all just trying to solve a problem. Architecture is a team thing,” says Mayne. “We fight for architecture.”
Author: Kat Hall, Marketing Assistant, Bespoke Careers