Andrew Zago

USA Target Fellow, 2008

Zago Architecture brings open-ended, creative inquiry to disciplinary concerns in architecture. Noted for its prescient articulation of emerging sensibilities, the practice weds quasi-autonomous aesthetic studies to the art of making buildings and cities. In doing so, Zago Architecture reaffirms the substantial and productive link amongst art, architecture and urbanism. Andrew Zago, principal of Zago Architecture, has over twenty years of professional experience in architecture, urbanism, and education. He began professional practice in 1987 after receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Michigan and a Master of Architecture from Harvard University. Zago currently teaches at the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI- Arc), where he is also the coordinator of the Visual Studies program. From 2003 to 2007 he was the founding director of the Master of Architecture program at the City College of New York, and he has also taught at Cornell University, the University of Michigan, UCLA and the Ohio State University. Zago is a fellow of the American Academy in Rome and a member of the National Register of Peer Professionals of the General Services Administration in Washington. He is a recipient of both an Academy Award in Architecture from the American Academy of Arts and Letters and a Fellowship Grant from the United States Artists organization. Of his firm's work, the American Academy of Arts and Letters citation states: "Against the contemporary fascination with limitless fluidity, Andrew Zago proposes highly disciplined structures framing spaces that support and promote a vigorous dialectic between solid and void, transparency and opacity, movement and stasis." Zago Architecture has offices in Detroit and Los Angeles. The firm has designed projects in the US and Korea and its work has appeared internationally in books, professional journals and reviews. Notable among the firm's recent projects are the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, the Fine Venture Office Tower, completed in association with Yamasaki Associates, Korea and a design studio facility for Cornell University's Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. In 2002 the firm was selected as an Emerging Voice by the Architectural League of New York, and in 2001 Zago Architecture was awarded a Progressive Architecture Award for the design of a community pavilion in Detroit. In 2005 a book on the firm's work, Zago Architecture and Office dA : Two Installations was published by the SCI-Arc press.

Portrait/photo courtesy Paul Redmond

Greening of Detroit Pavilion, Detroit, Michigan, 2001; photo courtesy Andrew Zago



Awards & Recognitions

  • Academy Award in Architecture, American Academy of Arts and Letters. 2003
  • Franklin D. Israel Fellow in Architecture, American Academy in Rome. 2002
  • Emerging Voice, Emerging Voices Series, Architectural League of New York. 2002
  • Progressive Architecture Award, Detroit Community Pavilion (with Mark Anderson). 2001