Architecture professor's firm named Emerging Voices competition winner


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Low Design Office (LOWDO), an architecture and integrated design firm co-founded by DK Osseo-Asare, assistant professor of architecture and engineering design at Penn State, has been named a winner of the Architectural League of New York’s Emerging Voices 21 competition.

Established in 1982, the Emerging Voices award spotlights individuals and firms based in the United States, Canada and Mexico with distinct design voices and the potential to influence the disciplines of architecture, landscape design and urbanism.

Based in Austin, Texas, and Tema, Ghana, LOWDO explores the links between sustainability, technology and geopolitics. The firm’s projects search to find optimal balance between design and resource consumption — to achieve the “most” with the “least.”

LOWDO has earned numerous international accolades in recent years and was named one of the 50 best emerging architecture practices in the world Domus magazine in 2020. The firm was featured in Architect magazine’s “Next Progressives” list in 2019, was a finalist for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) and MoMA PS1 Young Architects Program that same year and was recognized as an emerging architecture firm in the December 2017/January 2018 issues of Architectural Review.

Osseo-Asare and Ryan Bollom, LOWDO co-founders and principals, started the practice in 2006 while they were students at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. The firm was created around the idea that transformative innovation in creative fields “most often originates when the creator must overcome limited means and resources to provide meaning in their work.”

LOWDO will be featured in the Emerging Voices lecture series at 6 p.m. on March 18. More information about the event, which is free and open to the public but requires advanced registration, can be found on the Architecture League’s website.


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Megan Lakatos

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DK Osseo-Asare, assistant professor of architecture and engineering design. IMAGE: PENN STATE COLLEGE OF ENGINEERING