Press Releases

February 1, 2016

The American Institute of Architects New York Chapterís New Practices Committee celebrates innovative New York firms

NEW YORK, New York, February 1, 2016 – On Thursday, January 28, the New Practices Committee of the AIA New York Chapter welcomed the New Practices New York 2016 competition jury to the Center for Architecture, where they announced the competition’s six winners.

The distinguished panel of jurors selected the winners from 53 entries. Jury members were: William Menking, Editor-in-Chief, The Architect’s Newspaper; Julian Rose, Principal, Formlessfinder; Jane Smith, AIA, IIDA, ASID, Partner, Spacesmith; Martino Stierli, Philip Johnson Chief Curator of Architecture and Design, MoMA; Ada Tolla, Partner, LOT-EK.

Six promising and pioneering firms were chosen as the New Practices New York 2016 competition winners:
stpmj (
Studio Cadena (
Taller KEN (
Young Projects (

Representing more than 5,200 members, AIA New York is the oldest and largest chapter of an 80,000-member national organization. "With its sixth biennial competition, AIA New York and its New Practices Committee continue their commitment to serving as a platform for new and innovative models of architecture practice. The entries to the 10th-anniversary competition showed once more the diversity of architecture practices in New York City. Considering this year’s theme of ‘Prospect,’ the jury recognized six winners that have leveraged multiple aspects of the architecture profession, utilizing unique and innovative strategies, both in the projects and the practices they have started. We congratulate these six winners and look forward to presenting their work during 2016," said Christopher Leong, Assoc. AIA, and Philipp von Dalwig, Assoc. AIA, AIANY New Practices Committee Co-Chairs.

“I was extremely impressed by the diversity of the work of this year's winners across project type and site,” said juror Jane Smith, AIA, IIDA, ASID, AIANY Vice President for Professional Development. “Common to all was a strong commitment to research and experimentation in the areas of environment, materials, form and social engagement. The jury was mutually drawn to work that was comparatively modest in scale, formed with an elegant simplicity and rich with innovative uses for natural and hand crafted materials.”

New Practices New York 2016 is a preeminent platform in New York City for recognizing and promoting young architecture and design firms. To qualify for the competition, practices had to be founded since 2006 and be located within the five boroughs of New York City. The competition was open to multidisciplinary firms, widening the field of entrants to designers and young professionals currently in the process of becoming licensed architects.

As part of the award, firms will receive a stipend for an installation and exhibition at the Center for Architecture, which will open on May 12, 2016. Winners will also participate in symposia and lectures at the Cosentino Showroom, and will travel to Spain with underwriter, Cosentino.


MODU is an interdisciplinary architecture practice specializing in smart design that connects people to their environments. Co-directed by Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem, MODU has won international design competitions and awards sponsored by AIA, Architectural League of New York, Beijing Architecture Biennial, and Design Museum Holon. The practice was awarded a commendation for “21 for 21,” an award recognizing architects leading “the next generation of architects in the 21st century.” MODU’s research has received grants from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation and the New York State Council on the Arts. The practice’s interdisciplinary, multi-scalar approach bridges several built environment disciplines, from architecture to urbanism and interiors.

SCHAUM/SHIEH is a small architectural collaboration operating between Houston, TX and New York City. Rosalyne Shieh and Troy Schaum established SCHAUM/SHIEH in 2009 around overlapping interests in art, form, and the city, and have developed a dialogue through projects ranging from buildings and installations to speculative projects and unsolicited urban plans. The practice has a particular interest in the city at the scale of the building, both as a site of theoretical experimentation and as a reality that may be transformed through building.


stpmj is an idea-driven design practice based in New York and Seoul. The office was founded by Seung Teak Lee and Mi Jung Lim with the belief that their work explores a new perspective built from careful observations of material, structure, and program expanding to the social, cultural, environmental, and economic phenomena of our time. stpmj aims for provocative realism. The firm designs iconic architecture that stands out, not apart; that is visionary, not fantastical. Continually embracing new parameters, stpmj provides distinct solutions at various ranges from architecture to urban strategies, from tangible realities to utopian ideas with unforeseen manners.

Studio Cadena
Studio Cadena is an award-winning design and architecture practice engaging contemporary life, the city, and its people. Studio Cadena is interested in the real, in designing new and captivating spaces, places, and experiences for those who use them.

The studio is young, yet combines substantial experience in the US and abroad, ranging from high-level strategic planning for cities, to project design on commercial, residential and institutional projects – museums, libraries, private houses, exhibitions, interiors, and furniture. Studio Cadena was founded by Benjamin Cadena and is based in Brooklyn.

Taller KEN
Taller KEN, founded in 2013 by Gregory Melitonov and Ines Guzman, is a New York- and Guatemala-based architecture practice focused on playful design with social and cultural relevancy.
The studio’s work ranges from mixed-use development to commercial and residential projects and exhibition and installation design. The firm has received awards from the AIA and has been featured in publications including Dezeen, Domus, Dwell, and The Guardian.
Melitonov and Guzman previously worked for Pritzker Prize laureate Renzo Piano as part of the design team for the Whitney Museum of American Art.


Young Projects
Bryan Young founded the design studio Young Projects in NYC in 2010. The studio produces multidisciplinary work ranging from architecture and art, to furniture and objects. Current projects include a ground-up retreat in the Dominican Republic, a townhouse in Williamsburg, and a Hamptons bungalow. Young Projects received the 2013 Architectural League Prize, an Architizer A+ Award for their Times Square Heart, and The Architect’s Newspaper’s “Best of Design” for the Gerken Residence in Tribeca.
Young received his master’s with distinction from Harvard in 2003, where he was awarded the AIA Henry Adams Medal and the GSD Thesis Prize. He received his bachelor’s from UC Berkeley in 1997.

The New Practices New York 2016 exhibition will be on view at the Center for Architecture, 536 LaGuardia Place, New York City from May 12, 2016.

The exhibition opening for New Practices New York 2016 will be held on May 12, 2016, from 6:00-8:00pm at the Center for Architecture, 536 LaGuardia Place, New York City, and is free and open to the public. Members of the press are invited to the opening.

Special thanks to the supporters of New Practices New York 2016:



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About the AIA New York Chapter
AIA New York is the oldest and largest chapter of the American Institute of Architects with more than 5,200 architect, allied professional, student, and public members. AIANY is dedicated to three goals: design excellence, public outreach and professional development.

About the Center for Architecture
The Center for Architecture is the premier cultural venue for architecture and the built environment in New York City, informed by the complexity of the City’s urban fabric and in dialogue with the global community. The Center shares a home with the AIA New York Chapter and has the unique advantage of drawing upon the ideas and experiences of practicing architects to produce thought-provoking exhibitions, informative public programs, and quality design education experiences for K-12 students. It also leads New York City’s annual month-long architecture and design festival, Archtober. The Center for Architecture’s aim is to further public knowledge about New York City architecture and architects, foster exchange and collaboration among members of the design, development, building, scholarly, and policy sectors, and inspire new ideas about the role of design in communities by presenting contemporary and practical issues in architecture and urbanism to a general audience.

AIANY New Practices Committee
The New Practices Committee of the AIA New York Chapter is dedicated to serving as a forum for new and evolving models of architecture and design practice.


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