Amy Frearson – Editor-at-Large for Dezeen. Amy is a London-based writer, editor and speaker specialising in architecture and design. In addition to her role at Dezeen, the world’s biggest and most influential design website, and also contributes to magazines including Elle Decoration, Grand Designs, Icon and Design Anthology. Amy worked in architectural practice before moving into journalism. After a stint at the Architects’ Journal, she joined Dezeen in 2011 as architecture reporter and worked her way up to become editor, a role she held from 2016 to 2019. She was highly commended in the specialist editor category at the British Society of Magazine Editors Awards in 2017, and Dezeen won digital editorial team of the year at the AOP Digital Publishing Awards the same year. Amy is currently collaborating with interior designer Naomi Cleaver on a book for RIBA Publications, on the design of co-living and co-working spaces around the world, and overseeing texts for the British Pavilion at the Venice Architecture Biennale in 2021.
On the panel:
Mark Dytham – Co-founder of Klein Dytham Architecture. Mark and business partner Astrid Klein established Klein Dytham architecture (KDa) in Tokyo in 1992, working freely across disciplines including architecture, interiors, furniture, installations and events. Today KDa is a multi-lingual office with an international reputation and a high-profile client list including Selfridges, Virgin Atlantic, Bloomberg, Sony, Google Japan, Japan Rail, Mori Building, Tokyu Land, Swire Properties and Japan’s bookstore and media giant Tsutaya. KDa’s projects have received many accolades including awards from D&AD, World Architecture Festival, Wallpaper*, Business Week, Architectural Review and they have won the prestigious Design for Asia Award three times. In 2003 Mark and Astrid devised PechaKucha Night as an event for Tokyo designers to meet and share their work – it has now grown into an international network with events running in over 1,250 cities around the globe, inspiring creatives worldwide.
Peter Exley – 2020 First Vice President/2021 President of The American Institute of Architects (AIA). Peter has established an internationally recognized practice of architecture for children, families, and communities, elevating the standards of design for learning and play environments. He is the co-founder of Architecture Is Fun, a Chicago-based architecture, design, and consulting firm. Dedicated to helping the next generation of architects, Peter has also been an adjunct professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) for more than 25 years. Peter has served AIA in a number of roles, including as president of AIA Chicago, Illinois regional representative to the Strategic Council, chair of the Public Outreach Committee, and liaison to the Young Architects Forum.
Maria Smith – Director of Sustainability and Physics at Buro Happold. Maria is an award-winning architect, engineer, writer, and curator, working across disciplines to bring the built environment in line with planetary limits. Maria is a councillor of the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), a trustee of the Architecture Foundation, and on the steering committee of Architects Declare. She also a Design Advocate for the Mayor of London and was chief curator of the 2019 Oslo Architecture Triennale “Enough: The Architecture of Degrowth”.
Armstrong Yakubu – Senior Partner at Foster + Partners. Armstrong has a unique role, which combines his responsibilities as a permanent member of the Design Board with close involvement in a few, carefully selected projects that benefit from his specialist expertise. Some of his more recent work includes his close involvement with the redevelopment of The Murray in central Hong Kong. Currently he is involved in the design of the Oceanwide Center in San Francisco. In Washington DC, Armstrong was in charge of the master planning of the CityCenterDC – transforming the 12-acre site of the former Washington DC Convention Center into a new downtown neighbourhood complete with walkable streets, alleyways, parks and squares combined with vibrant shopping and a mixed used community. He was one of the lead designers on the landmark Hearst Headquarters in New York, which combines the creative reuse of a historic stone base with a contemporary tower.