Interview: Blostein Overly Architects (Summer 2010)

B:O headshot


Beth Blostein and Bart Overly both received their B.Arch at Ohio State University. Before founding the firm, Blostein Overly Architects, Beth received her M.Des at Harvard’s GSD, and Bart went on to receive his M.Arch at Princeton University. Both spent time in larger firms in Columbus, Ohio, before establishing their own firm: Beth at Design Group Columbus, and Bart at the Columbus office of NBBJ. as well as teaching at the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State University.
After establishing their own firm, they entered and won several competitions:


– SECCA “Home: House” competition
– New Housing New York Competition
– Ferrous Park Housing competition, Kansas City
– Boston Center for the Arts Urban Plaza
In the meantime, they have private residences under construction in the Columbus, Ohio suburbs and environs.

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Allison Williams, FAIA (Summer 2009)

Allison Williams FAIA, since 2013 Vice President and Director of Design for AECOM’s U.S. West region, has risen through the ranks of large architecture firms to her present position: SOM, Ai (merged with Perkins + Will) to AECOM. Along the way, there have been several competitions, some of which have been built. One of the most notable was the August Wilson Center in Pittsburgh, the competition having occurred in 2003 and completion in 2009.
As is often the case with large firms, Allison was leading the design studios for major projects. Among those were San Jose Museum of Art Addition; Yerba Buena Tower, San Francisco; Tower City, Cleveland, Ohio (winning competition entry—unbuilt); Richmond (CA) Civic Center Master Plan; Echelon Corporate Headquarters Cmpus, San Jose; Toledo Federal Courthouse Finalist (GSA Design Excellence Program); Calexico US Port of Entry (CA), competition 2011 and GSA commission; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California.
Allison Williams received her B.Arch and M.Arch from the University of California, Berkeley.

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Peter Busby, RAIC (Winter 2010)

Peter Busby

As Managing Director of Busby Perkins+Will, Peter is involved in the design and sustainable direction of each project the firm engages. Overseeing design offices in Vancouver, British Columbia and Seattle, Washington, and now San Francisco, Peter directs more than 100 employees working on projects across Canada, the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. As a director of Perkins+Will since 2004, Peter has expanded his role to include sustainable design leadership to the firm’s 23 offices worldwide; and Perkins+Will has been recognized internationally as the leader in sustainable building design, having the largest portfolio of built green projects in North America

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Jacques Ferrier (Fall 2009)

Jacques Ferrier Architecte

with Olha Romaniuk
Jacques Ferrier’s career as a provincial architect to one of France’s major players in the profession took a dramatic turn with his competition win for the Water Treatment Plant in Paris. After that, he has won numerous competitions, including a competition for the Airbus France buildings at Paris-Orly airport, the Cite de la Voile Eric Tabarly in Lorient, Piper Heidsieckand Charles Heidsieck Headquarters, and theFrench Pavilion First Prize for the Universal Exposition in Shanghai.
Partially as a result of his award-winning competition entry for the Water Treatment Plant, he has become a major player in energy and sustainability issues as a member of the Board of Directors of the Foundation Building Energy, created in 2005 to promote European research projects in sustainable development.
He has also been active as a writer, including Useful Poetry of Useful Things and Concept Office.

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Andrzej Bulanda (Summer 2008)

Since opening an office in Warsaw, Poland in 1991, Andrzaj Bulanda of Bulanda Mucha Architects has won a number of competitions, many of which have been realized. Some of the more impressive are the BRE BANK Headquarters in Bydgoszcz, the adaptation and modernization of Rother Mill and the Hotel PRUDENTIAL in Warsaw. Bulanda received his M.Engineering at the Warsaw Polytechnic, worked with Rolf Gutbrot and Frei Otto in Berlin before receiving a B.Arch from the University of Detroit. He was later a visiting scholar at Harvard’s GSD, then taught for one year at Pennsylvania State University.


Andrzej Bulanda and Vlodzimierz Mucha

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Silvio d’Ascia (Spring 2013)



with Olha Romaniuk
Born in Naples, Italy in 1969, Silvio d’Ascia is a 1993 graduate of the School of Architecture of the University of Naples, from which he also obtained a Doctorate in Research in Architectural Composition. Moving to Paris in 1993, he established his own firm in 2001 following several years of working in association with other firms in France and abroad. The new Porta Susa high-speed rail station in Turin allowed him to develop his passion for an architecture serving as a link between the past and the future. Since then he has won other commissions for rail stations, and even branched out to win projects in the People’s Republic of China.

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Mark Robbins (2014 Port of Kinman Juror)


Mark Robbins was elected President and CEO of The American Academy in Rome in fall 2013 following an international search, and brings to the Academy extensive experience as an artist, architect and educator. Mark came to the Academy from his position as Executive Director of the International Center of Photography in New York, a museum and educational institution dedicated to the presentation and interpretation of the reproduced image. From 2004 to 2012, as Dean and Professor at Syracuse University School of Architecture and University Senior Advisor on Architecture and Urban Initiatives, he had a transformative role on both the school and the city.

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Franco Purini (Winter 2007/2008)

In the design world, Italy is not only famous as a repository of classical architecture and art, but also for its current collection of artists and architects who have gained an international reputation in modern design. But for those not specializing in product design, opportunities in Italy are limited. Enter Franco Purini, an Italian architect who is not only known as a practicing professional, but is one of the world’s more interesting theorists. Probably because he is based in Italy, where classical architecture is so predominant, Purini has found a way to wed the classical and modern in a theoretical system. Whereas the classical achieves order and avoids chaos, neo-rationalism enables the designer to achieve the same by putting in place a new set of rules. On the other hand, Purini is a firm advocate of the element of surprise, sometimes seen in his architecture as a non-connector, which normally is part of an essential support system.
Along the way, Purini entered numerous competitions, winning a Florence planning competition in 1977 and the Urban Park Competition in Calabria in 2001. Since 1977 he has been the Professor of Architectural Composition and City Planning at the Sapienza University, Rome.

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Peter Schaudt (Fall 2008)

Peter Schaudt’s migration from the study of architecture to landscape architecture has resulted in the establishment of one of the country’s most important landscape architecture firms. Initially studying architecture at the University of Illinois’ Chicago campus, his merit award for his Vietnam Veterans Memorial entry as an undergraduate in 1981 was an indication of things to come. After joining landscape architect Dan Kiley’s office, and receiving his MLA at Harvard, he was involved in a number of competitions, two of which were with the office of Michael Van Valkenburgh. In 1990 he was the American Academyi of Rome Prize winner in Landscape Architecture, then shortly afterwards established his own practice in Chicago. Subsequent competition winners—in collaboration with other firms—included the Erie Street Plaza Competition in Milwaukee and the team of PLANT Architects, Shore Irwin Tilbe and Adrian Blackwell for the international Nathan Phillips Square competition in Toronto. Later he joined the Perkins and Will team to win the Shanghai Nature Museum and Plaza competition.
In 2008 his firm merged with Douglas Hoerr, FASLA, to form Hoerr Schaudt Landscape Architects.


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Diana Balmori (Winter 2009)

Diana Balmori

Recognized in the international design community as one of the principal landscape architecture firms in this country, Balmori Associates is often invited by architecture firms to take part in competitions as the landscape design component of the team. In this role, she was part of a winning team with Zaha Hadid Architects for the Amman Performing Arts Center in Jordan, as well as the winning World Mammoth +Permafrost Museum in Russia with Leeser Architects. Among other international successes have been the winning Campa de los Ingleses riverfront project in Bilbao, Spain, and as a finalist in the 10 Li Ring Park, Sejong, Korea competition. Her minimalist design for the World War II Memorial competition in Washington, DC, as one of five finalists, was a serious contender for the commission. More recently, Balmori Associates was one of five invited finalists in the high-profile Lexington (KY) Town Branch Competition. She was engaged as a consulting firm to manage the realization of the Beale Street Landing project on the Mississippi River, the result of a winning competition entry by RTN of Buenos Aires.
Diana Balmori has held teaching positions at Yale University and the State University of New York (SUNY). After a tenure at Cesar Pelli Architects, where she headed the landscape architecture studio, she founded her own firm in New York in 1990.

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