Life demands answers to complex questions.
No question has one fixed answer.
So we form a team of interdisciplinary designers, thinkers, and makers.
Form follows function.
Form follows flourishing.
So good design allows people and nature to thrive.
Creativity is collaboration in context.
Creativity is conducting.
So we make to learn what the world has to teach us.
So we practice in the gap
Between pragmatism and poetry.
Between intelligence and intuition.
Between experience and imagination.
So every site is a question and every project is an answer.
So.
WHY NOT.
Life demands answers to complex questions.
No question has one fixed answer.
So we form a team of interdisciplinary designers, thinkers, and makers.
Form follows function.
Form follows flourishing.
So good design allows people and nature to thrive.
Creativity is collaboration in context.
Creativity is conducting.
So we make to learn what the world has to teach us.
So we practice in the gap
Between pragmatism and poetry.
Between intelligence and intuition.
Between experience and imagination.
So every site is a question and every project is an answer.
So.
WHY NOT.
WHY Workshops

Our interdependent workshop structure allows us to function as an ecology of disciplines, combining the expertise of architects, landscape designers, museum strategists, furniture makers, and creatives of all types.

Whether we’re working on a museum or a private residence, a masterplan or an experimental object, there’s no such thing as a singular WHY aesthetic. We work globally across different sectors and building types, and each project is the outcome of its own context, collaborations, and conversations.

Above all, we seek to foster an ethic of inclusivity and social responsibility, and we are committed to positively impacting the lives of the diverse communities we work with. We design with one goal in mind: to allow people, culture, and places to thrive.

Misa Lund, COO
Kulapat Yantrasast, Founder and Creative Director

Our international team brings together multiple different skills, experiences, and perspectives. We work primarily from our two main offices in New York and Los Angeles, with outposts in Paris and San Francisco.

Misa Lund, COO

Misa provides strategic, operational and fiscal leadership for WHY, and is a licensed architect in seven states. She brings over 20 years of experience on a variety of architectural projects at all scales, and her approach is rooted in a deep interest in how individuals and communities can engage with the process of design and gain a greater understanding of its impact on daily life. As COO, she provides project management leadership and oversight, working closely with clients and design teams to ensure the highest objectives are met in the quality and performance of WHY’s initiatives. Misa is a strong listener and effective communicator, and she is passionate about creating a culture for effective collaboration and creative thinking. She approaches the management of an interdisciplinary practice as a design challenge in itself, refining structures and processes to enable the team to do their best work.

Interview with Misa for Madame Architect

Madame Architect

Kulapat Yantrasast, Founder and Creative Director

Kulapat established wHY in 2004 with the intention of combining his experience in the art world with a deep commitment to cultural inclusivity and human flourishing. He received his MA and Ph.D. degrees in architecture from the University of Tokyo, and subsequently worked as a close associate of Tadao Ando, leading several important US and European museum and culture projects including the Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas, the Clark Art Institute in Williamstown, Massachusetts, and Fondation Francois Pinault pour l’Art Contemporain in Paris. He is a frequent public speaker at leading institutions and organizations, discussing architecture through the lens of ecology, cuisine, and human sociability, and is the first architect to receive the Silpathorn Award for Design from Thailand’s Ministry of Culture. Kulapat currently serves on the board of a number of cultural institutions, and is a trustee of the Noguchi Museum in New York City and the Pulitzer Arts Foundation.

Interview with Kulapat for The New York Times

NY Times

The WHY Buildings Workshop binds together our ecology of disciplines, guiding design concepts through to construction.

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The WHY Landscape Workshop applies strategies of wilding and creative design to bring biodiversity to the built environment.

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The WHY Museums Workshop is our platform for progressive thinking about museums and cultural institutions.

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WHY Objects are material experiments at home in their environment.

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The WHY Ideas Workshop is our think-tank for impactful community engagement and creative collaborations.

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Team
  • Aiysha Alsane
    Landscape Designer
  • Alban Denic
    Designer
  • Amanda Coen
    Landscape Designer
  • Byron Chang
    Senior Associate
  • Cecilia Hui
    Designer
  • Chung Eun Kim
    Senior Associate
  • Ellie Yamane
    Business Administrator
  • Francesca Carney
    Architect
  • Frank Dadfar
    Designer
  • Georgina Jiang
    Designer
  • Graham Brindle
    Associate
  • Grit Vltavsky
    Project Manager
  • Hannah Waller
    Office of the Creative Director
  • Jarrod Beck
    Exhibition Designer
  • Jing Liu
    Associate
  • Kenny Tang
    Landscape Architect
  • Kira Appelhans
    Senior Landscape Designer
  • Lucas Lind
    Designer
  • Matt Choot
    Associate
  • Michael Woodsmall
    Strategic Development Manager
  • Paulina Bouyer-Magana
    Designer
  • Simone Lapenta
    Senior Associate
  • Sophie Maguire
    Landscape Designer
  • Sora Park
    Senior Interior Designer
  • Will Wei
    Designer
  • Witchaya Wipusanawan
    Designer
  • Yael Flores
    Designer
  • Yam Chumpolphaisal
    Designer

WORK