Studio North co-founders Mark Erickson and Matthew Kennedy first met during a university art class in Calgary, and lived across the street from each other during their graduate degrees at Dalhousie. That proximity led to their partnership as an interdisciplinary design and build practice is appropriate, as all of their projects since then have focused on community. Their work recognizes the spaces we inhabit inform the way we live our lives. Believing design can lead to better lives, this duo has created dozens of installations that ask new questions of old practices.
Erickson has worked in architectural offices in London, UK, Vancouver, and Halifax, and taught architectural technology at the Bachelor of Community Building and Design (BCBD) program at the University of The Gambia, Banjul, West Africa. Working internationally has helped broaden his understanding of how architecture is shaped according to culture, climate, geography, and ways of living.
Kennedy’s passion for design connects landscape, community, and the process of making. His ambitious nature as a designer, artist, and maker has driven him to realize projects of a variety of scales across Canada. His process of designing and making facilitate a logical process of composing ideas into built works. In 2011 he was awarded the Rossetti Travel Fellowship to travel to Japan and research compact housing typologies. His architectural thesis focused on developing a strategy for laneway housing in Calgary’s inner city communities.