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Washington University in St. Louis

Washington University in St. Louis

The Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis is a leader in architecture, art, and design education.

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Sam Fox School and Pulitzer Arts Foundation Name Kotchakorn Voraakhom Designer-In-Residence

By SMarkovic
Apr 25, '22 3:07 PM EST
Chao Phraya Sky Park, an elevated garden designed by landscape architect Kotchakorn Voraakhom and installed on an abandoned train bridge over the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, Thailand. (Project Owner: Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. Urban Design: Urban Design Development Center, Chulalongkorn University. Architecture design: N7A Architects. Landscape design: Landprocess. Photo: Landprocess and Panoramic Studio)
Chao Phraya Sky Park, an elevated garden designed by landscape architect Kotchakorn Voraakhom and installed on an abandoned train bridge over the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, Thailand. (Project Owner: Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. Urban Design: Urban Design Development Center, Chulalongkorn University. Architecture design: N7A Architects. Landscape design: Landprocess. Photo: Landprocess and Panoramic Studio)

Internationally celebrated landscape architect Kotchakorn Voraakhom will serve a year-long appointment as designer-in-residence for the Pulitzer Arts Foundation and the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis.

Voraakhom is founder of the Bangkok-based design firm Landprocess, as well as the nonprofit Porous City Network. Her work centers on designing productive urban green spaces that alleviate the effects of climate change in at-risk communities. 

Major projects include Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University Centenary Park, which can collect and store up to a million gallons of runoff and flood water; the Thammasat University Urban Rooftop Farm, the largest urban rooftop farm in Asia; and Chao Phraya Sky Park, a pedestrian walkway and elevated garden installed on an abandoned bridge over the Chao Phraya River.

In fall 2021, Voraakhom served as a visiting professor in the Sam Fox School. She taught the seminar “Messy Fluid Urbanism,” which explored climate-related challenges in delta cities around the world and, spoke in the school’s Public Lecture Series in spring 2021. This summer, she will host WashU students in Bangkok as part of the 2022 Global Urbanism Studio, led by senior lecturer Jonathan Stitelman. The studio is the annual capstone for the university’s Graduate School of Architecture & Urban Design’s Master of Urban Design program.

Voraakhom’s appointment as designer-in-residence will begin July 1 and continue through the 2022-23 academic year. Organized around the topic “Ecologies of Access for Vulnerable Sites in St. Louis,” it will include nearly a month of local site visits and engagement activities. Voraakhom also will continue to serve as a visiting professor in the Sam Fox School, co-teaching a studio for the school’s Master of Landscape Architecture program in spring 2023 and participating in reviews, critiques and other aspects of university life. The residency will culminate with a public event later that spring.

This residency stems from the Pulitzer Arts Foundation and Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University’s shared commitment to rethinking the future of St. Louis, and is one of several projects funded by an endowment created by Emily Rauh Pulitzer to support collaboration between the two institutions. It is organized by Derek Hoeferlin, WashU’s chair of landscape architecture and urban design, in conjunction with the Pulitzer’s Public Engagement Team and the Sam Fox School’s Office for Socially Engaged Practice.

Other recent collaborations between the Pulitzer and the Sam Fox School include the ASAP Fund, a series of grants designed to help artists navigate the COVID-19 pandemic; a residency by artist Jordan Weber; and several iterations of the PXSTL design competition.