Openstudio Architects was founded by Jennifer Beningfield in 2006. We create a sense of place specific to the context and history of each project, balancing complex sites, contradictory demands and challenging problems to form apparently effortless spaces that give joy.
We create places which are inventive, tactile, spatially layered, functional and materially appropriate and fulfilling to use. Sustainability is at the heart of our practice. We retain a deep responsibility to our environment, and design for longevity, to conserve resources, and to create buildings that are flexible and enable change over time.
We bring the relationship between humans and the natural world to the fore in our work. It is an implicit part of our buildings to enhance a sense of presence, fostering an awareness of nature, place and landscape that unfolds with time and use. We use natural materials in unexpected ways to add texture and depth to our work and to connect our buildings to the external environment. We regard research as an implicit part of our practice and understand the constraints and opportunities inherent in our sites. We are able to deliver solutions to problems that seem insurmountable through strategic thinking and thoughtful responses.
Openstudio is a RIBA Chartered Architecture practice, who have won two open RIBA housing competitions: in 2017 the RIBA TW2020 competition to design prototype housing across the UK; and in 2020 the RIBA Home of 2030 housing competition, delivering flexible and sustainable housing suitable for all generations. Openstudio has also been short-listed for the NLA New Ideas for Housing competition and the WAN House of the Year award. Previous awards include short-listing for the RIBA Birmingham Centenary Square competition.
The practice has exhibited a film installation as part of the 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale, and is featured in Architects’ Houses by Michael Webb, documenting thirty of the best architects’ houses from around the world built in the last ten years.