Tom Kundig-Sonoma Style

Tom Kundig-Sonoma Style

Tom Kundig is one of my favorite architects. To me, he’s an immensily  talented engineer/industrialist/architect with an extremely creative vision. He is an owner/principle in the architect firm Olson Kundig Architects in Seattle.

Chicken Point Cabin by Tom Kundig

While I wouldn’t say that I’m an Industrialist, nor a Modernist in style, I would say that Tom is both, and I LOVE the sense of style he brings to items that could look hard and cold. I think he is one of the most creative individuals I’ve seen because his work is characterized by such a strong personal direction. Olson Kundig are know for working with artists and craftspeople and that more then anything is integral to what they do. In some cases, the architecture becomes the vessel that supports specific art installations. In others, the architecture and art are formed together to create a seamless spatial experience. In nearly all their projects, they work with craftspeople to fabricate specific architectural elements so that the detail of the work relates directly to the larger expression.

Detail of Chicken Point Cabin-How do you open a window wall? Simple, Crank it open, even a child can do it!

I find his work not only clever, but practical and very functional. While it “should” look cold because of it’s industrial edge, to me it does not!

Merrill Wright house on the San Juan Islands

I love how some of his projects, like the Merrill Wright home in the San Juan Islands, seems to morph out of the rock landscape. Fabulous. I particularly love the master bathroom sink, where water runs down through a series of small bowls that were cut into the rock and polished smooth.

Bathroom sink also from the Merrill Wright Home on the San Juan Islands

There are so many pictures of this incredible house, that I really found it hard to select which ones to show. For a home made primarily out of rock, concrete and steel it is incredibly warm and inviting! I want to know if Ms. Wright did her own interior design. If so, she did a terrific job!

Also Merrill Wright Home on the San Juan Islands

Not only do I love the architecture, but some of the industrial features he uses in the interior, such as the crank for the window wall (see above), and the lights in the home shown in the photo below are so clever. The lights below actually are on a pulley system and will go up and out of your way when you don’t need them, and pull down to the perfect spot for you when you do.

interior image from the Brain home

There are so many more terrific projects he’s done, and so many, many more pictures I could have shown. This will hopefully give you a flavor, and to see more…I invite you to click on the links, and to buy his book Tom Kundig: Houses or Tom Kundig: Houses 2.

 Can you tell, I’m a FAN! What do you think of Tom’s style of architectural design? Is it interesting to you? Could you live in it? I invite you to leave me your thoughts in the comment section below. I always love hearing from you.

In the meantime, meet Tom Kundig in the video below. Tom if you see this…I want to work on the interior design of one of your projects…please?!




  1. Lyn Higgs 4 years ago

    WOW!! I was not prepared to like his style as I am basically not into the straight lined look–etc etc–however his designs are wonderful , creative and very forward and definitely melds into the Northwest landscape–I really enjoyed his presentation!!!

    • Author
      Irene Turner 4 years ago

      I know, right Lyn? He really is quite clever and incredibly creative. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. GRNY Renovation 4 years ago

    No wonder the title of “rockstar of residential architecture” was given to Tom Kundig. The dual American obsessions of industry and nature summed immaculately through his outstanding work. Great article and I’m sharing it!

    • Author
      Irene Turner 4 years ago

      Thanks so much! I can tell that you “get it”! Thanks for stopping by GRNY, I love seeing you around our mutual virtual realities

  3. GRNY Renovation 4 years ago

    GRNY Renovation :
    No wonder the title of “rockstar of residential architecture” was given to Tom Kundig. The dual American obsessions of industry and nature summed immaculately through his outstanding work. Great article and I’m sharing it!

  4. Terrie Hall 4 years ago

    Tom’s work is wonderful! I love the hand cranked window, and the way the home is integrated into the rocks and surroundings. I don’t find it cold at all! Good luck on your shout out to the”rockstar of residential architecture.” I hope he calls you!

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