Chicago Design Office is a progressive, issues-based design firm. To create a more equitable future, design at all scales must stake a conscious political claim, emphasizing work in and for the public realm.
In order to think, draw, and build radically and responsibly, we can operate in new ways as professional designers. Arriving at design through issues-based research liberates us from the client-designer-contractor hierarchy; thus, we are able to pursue opportunities and potentials unconstrained by sometimes arbitrary parameters.
The built environment, carefully considered, has the power to improve daily lived experience. We value research as an essential component of contemporary design practice.
FOUNDER Aneesha Dharwadker M.Des.S, Harvard University; B.Arch, Cornell University
INSPIRATIONS "As a profession, architecture embodies a strange paradox. In economic terms it is a largely reactive discipline, a response to pre-formulated needs. In intellectual terms it is the opposite: a visionary domain that claims the future. In this capacity architecture aspires to set the agenda and precede needs. The unfortunate thing for architects is that both conditions are equally true, making architecture a curious form of omniscience practiced in a context of utter dependency." Reinier de Graaf, 2015
"Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek." Barack Obama, 2008