Phillip Smith and Douglas Thompson first began working together while attending the GSAPP at Columbia University. Since the 1970’s they have had an architecture studio in New York City, during which time they have completed over one hundred projects, including interiors and new buildings.
Amongst them, their mixed-use building in the Chelsea district of New York City, is a special place described in the AIA Guide to New York City as “steel plates [embracing] a serene courtyard, serving two art galleries and the architects’ studio. Modernism with a sensitivity to urbane urban space”.
Clients include the New York Buddhist Church on Riverside Drive, the Tibetan Museum of Art on Staten Island, the Church of the Epiphany on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. Many of their projects involve renovation as well as additions to existing buildings.
The studio was a pioneering building in the Chelsea Art District when it was built in the late 90’s on formerly vacant land. Large sheets of steel enclose a highly transparent building arranged around a sculpture court. An art gallery occupies the three lower floors above which the architect’s office steps back, providing several rooftop spaces in the treetops. Inside, the office desks and facilities fold into the walls to create an open space for hosting social events.