#44 - Hold Your Values with Bonnie Bridges, Studio BBA


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Bonnie Bridges is the founder and Principal of Studio BBA in San Francisco. A strategic, clear thinker, perceptive listener and creative dynamo, Bonnie leads Studio BBA with adaptability, energy and fearless optimism. Drawing on deep expertise in the skilled facilitation of decisions and processes, and an intuitive, analytic nature, she guides the studio’s atelier of designers in creating beautiful, enriching, successful spaces and buildings for their clients.

Bonnie brings a keen awareness of place and purpose to her work, with an approach to the design process grounded in human experience, logic and thoughtful actions. This humanistic methodology took form during her graduate and doctoral research, which explored the relationship between being and building—through contemporary architectural theory and the study of phenomenology as interpreted and developed by Husserl and Heidegger, Kenneth Frampton, and Juhanni Palassma.

Site-specificity and material simplicity are essential aesthetic principles in Bonnie’s work, informed by growing up in California and ten years in the Sonoran Desert. She was profoundly inspired by these landscapes—imprinting within her a fundamental experience of light and space.

Actively involved in the civic realm and the greater architectural community, Bonnie is fueled by a deep, longstanding dedication to advancing the profession—through mentoring, teaching, advisory and Board roles. Bonnie founded the firm in 1992, preceded by working for award-winning firms in California and Arizona.

In this episode Bonnie shares how her deep knowledge of contemporary architectural theory enriches all projects at the firm. Bonnie talks about how at the core of her work is the belief that everyone who participates in a project actually matters. She also shares her experience of starting her own practice while raising a family, and that one can be dedicated to their intellect, values, and what they bring to society, but equally dedicated to their family.

60 episoder