If Only

children had design review oversight, says Kevin Kudo-King, principal and owner of Olson Kundig.

WE ARE BORN with an innate sense of wonder, joy and curiosity. As children, we wanted things to be fun, we investigated and discovered. Kids can sniff out stifled ideas and quickly diagnose dullness. They don’t hold back on sharing their opinions or asking, ‘What if…?’

Those qualities don’t leave us, we simply become conditioned to push them aside. We fear looking silly or uninformed. We focus on jurisdictional and technical realities instead. What’s approved – while it checks the boxes – is oftentimes uninspired.

What if children had to approve our designs? What if we had to present our ideas to a Design Review Panel made up of kids? What if having fun was mandatory?

Kevin Kudo-King, AIA, LEED AP, is principal and owner of Seattle-based design firm Olson Kundig. Kevin leads projects worldwide, including a variety of private homes and hospitality destinations. His work emphasises an integration of art, architecture and craft, grounded in a contextual response to the natural conditions of a site. olsonkundig.com

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