Olson Kundig Announces Recipient of Inaugural Creative Exchange Residency Program

September 6, 2016

Olson Kundig is proud to announce the recipient of their inaugural Creative Exchange Residency Program is Robin Frohardt, award-winning artist, and director. Conceived by the firm’s Think Tank team, the Residency Program entailed an open invitation for submissions to collaborate and impact the collective practice of the firm.

With a fifty year history of collaboration, the primary focus of Olson Kundig has been on architecture, interiors, exhibit design, product design, and landscape design. Past collaborators have included artists, choreographers, writers, chefs, scientists, fashion designers, and horticulturists. The inaugural Creative Exchange Residency Program will take place at Olson Kundig’s office in Seattle and Robin, as the chosen resident, will be provided with a grant of $10,000 USD.

We were extremely impressed by the quality and thoughtfulness of the submittals we received. In the end, the decision of selecting our resident was a collective one in which all votes were equal. Robin’s proposal stood out in its clarity and provided a variety of opportunities for collaboration that involved the entire firm—some in ways that are familiar to us, and others that are completely new. What we hope will result is a successful blend of storytelling and placemaking, highlighting Robin’s observations on the “permanence of the disposable,” within an environment that is engaging and which rewards inspection.

Jerry Garcia, Principal, Olson Kundig

Robin Frohardt reacted to her selection as the inaugural Creative Exchange Resident by saying, “I am deeply honored to be chosen for this unique opportunity to work with the team at Olson Kundig. There is so much potential within this collaboration and I can hardly wait to see what comes out of it!” Robin’s submission was selected from over 130 entries. Her residency will focus on the development of specific elements of her current project THE PLASTIC BAG STORE. Part installation, part performance, THE PLASTIC BAG STORE takes place in a real storefront in New York City. Addressing the themes of overconsumption and waste, it presents a rich environment alive with puppets, actors, and highly detailed sets. Robin’s Residency Program will take place at Olson Kundig’s Seattle offices before the end of 2016 and will comprise of a two- to four-week period at the office with a dedicated workspace. The nature of Olson Kundig’s practice has led to the cultivation of a wide network of creative thinkers, makers, and innovators. These are people the firm will endeavor to connect Robin to, in order to augment her residency experience. Robin plans to launch the project in the fall of 2017.

Photo: Lovis Ostenrik.

Photo: Lovis Ostenrik.

About Robin Frohardt

Known for her rich aesthetic and highly detailed constructions, Robin Frohardt is an award-winning artist and director living in Brooklyn, NY. Her unique sense of humor and stunning technical craft came together to create work that defies the conventions of traditional storytelling. Her work includes the original play she designed and directed, “THE PIGEONING,” as well as two all cardboard short films, “FITZCARDBOARDALDO” and “THE CORRUGATION OF DREAMS.” She has also worked on large-scale art projects including Swoon’s “Swimming Cities,” in addition to creating puppets, sets, and props for many theater, film and television productions. She currently works as an adjunct puppetry professor at the University of Maryland and a puppeteer at Radio City Music Hall.

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