Roderick Varh

Roderick Varh

Seattle, WA, US


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I am an honored 1st generation Hmong American, a humbled U.S. Army War Veteran, a proud Husband and newly Father, a fanatic enthusiast in the socio-political history of urban hip/hop and rap forms of music, an avid traveler in search of inconspicuous forms of experiential inspiration, and last but not least an obsessively passionate Architectural Designer.  Three words that define me as a designer: Exploratory, Experimental, and Inventive.  

I believe that as technology advances so should we as building architects and designers.  The way we think about architecture, the way we design architecture, and the way architecture is built should all be reflective of positive and practical solutions that work to repair the critical issues of our time. Natural to the impulse of a designer, we start to lose ourselves, falling under the influence to stimulative graphic temptations over form or most recently the compulsive delusion in the need for decorative digital software tools to help shape them, the distractions of style(s), or siding with a particular theoretical ideology.  But I believe the obsession over these intangible philosophical values should be carefully reevaluated as priorities second to the deeper meaningful issue of simply building more sustainably.  Not to say that form should follow function but that if the agenda is to concede of form then high performance should be the primary outcome set to be achieved.  

My particular professional interest lies with a focus on architectural performance.  The most important question for this interest is fundamentally rethinking and redefining new ways on how to maximize a buildings ability to support a desired function or multi- combined functions, in such ways that alters a dramatic reduction in the usage of energy.  The best discovery would be the ingenuity of a building to fully self generate its own operational power.  Obvious existing constraints that can’t be avoided are budget and affordability.  But I think the world deserves to be educated and clients on making better informed decisions and architects being more proactively accountable as building experts by placing emphasis on sustainable practice and making these viable solutions more transparent.  The underlying role of a designer should be to design responsibly.  Consequential to this position, every new building should be a leading precedent to help improve the one that will come after. Nonetheless, one of my greater intent is to advance building architectural knowledge with aim of helping the world to become a more cleaner, sustainable place.  

I like to think of my design work to be a perfect balance between the accidental imperfections art and the calculated precision of engineering.  Poetically profound and technically specialized are both the level at which I strive to creatively push my designs.    

My work derives from a conscious design approach that emphasizes careful logic, and rational control, influenced by a progressively unconventional way of thinking.  Openness allows me to think outside the box enabling me to gain meaningful insights and achieve transformative knowledge, all things crucial to the growth of my design intelligence and the quality output of my work.  

I like to think of my work as end results of a reductive design process developed from both extensive research and the meticulous multi-iterative generation of creative schematic concepts.  Consistent with this maturing process is an uncompromising systematic design method that seeks to produce nothing less than fresh new high caliber innovative ideas.  

Herzog & de Meuron, Renzo Piano & Steven Holl


Chris Pardo Design - Elemental Architecture, Seattle, WA, US, Project Manager/ Visualization

Feb 2014 - current

Kodet Architectural Group, Minneapolis, MN, US, Designer

Construction Documents

Jan 2013 - Jun 2013

U.S. Army Reserve, York, SC, US, Sergeant - E5

1 year Deployment - Afghanistan
April 2005 - April 2006

Jan 2008 - Jan 2012


University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, NC, US, BArch, Bachelors of Arts in Architecture

Aug 2008 - current

Central Piedmont Community College, Charlotte, NC, US, Associates of Science - Biology Focus

Aug 2006 - May 2008


AIA 2013 Center for Emerging Professionals Annual Exhibition, Other

Selected and Exhibited at the 2013 AIA Grass Root Convention in Washington D.C. from March/April.

Project Title: "Fabric Facade Retrofit - Reimagining a New Vitalizing Social Structure"


AIA - New Urban Models For Aging, Honorable Mention

Project Title: "Gardens of Life"


Areas of Specialization 


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