Designing in Color (DCo) is a collaborative platform organized by young architects and designers located in Los Angeles, Boston, and Seattle. Its intent is to challenge the established rhetoric of architecture and design. DCo seeks to encourage professionals of color and students to thrive in environments that discourage their substantial multicultural creativity.
DCo's approach is to create workshops, think tanks, and various digital initiatives meant to challenge systems of oppression in architecture.
Identifying the oppression is merely the first step. The next is the creation of content meant to combat these negative ideologies. Our platform compiles this content with the hope of inspiring positive change in the field of design.
WHAT WE DO
Young professionals are encouraged to identify structures of power that inhibit their creative practices in spaces where design or socially engaged activity occurs.
Architecture is a collaborative process that includes a variety of problem-solving. DCo enables students and professionals to work together through group workshops to spark ideas and possible solutions to a multitude of issues.
Ideas are valuable moments of a number of possibilities. The creation of content through different kinds of mediums helps to ensure that the proposed work reaches a wide range of people. DCo seeks to distribute content via film across the country and globe.
Christopher challenges the established practices of architecture as a Black designer, spatial advocate, and social innovator to create new spaces for equitable change. Currently located in Los Angeles, he moved to the city after graduating from the University of Michigan with a Master's degree in architecture. For three years, Christopher was a designer at ZGF Architects where he worked on a variety of workplace and educational institution projects. Notably, he worked on the Cal State Los Angeles Student Services Building, a 150,000 sf mid-century building renovation from the beginning of construction administration. Christopher is a member of SoCal NOMA chapter in Los Angeles where he is actively engaged in youth mentorship through the organization's pipeline project summer camp. In 2017 Christopher co-founded small talks: LA, a community-based organization created to assemble a network of people and construct safe spaces to amplify the disparate voices of Los Angeles. With the creation of Designing in Color and small talks: LA, and film making, he is studying the current housing crisis across the city and using film as a means of telling stories for narratives unknown.
Opalia is a designer at DREAM Collaborative where she is currently working on multi-family residential homes, as well as interior apartment fit-outs for MIT in Cambridge, MA. In addition to her work as a designer, Opalia’s passions lie in curating spaces of inclusion for minority individuals to collaborate, grow, and enjoy themselves. She is also an avid traveler and is looking forward to her next cultural exchange.
Rubin is a junior architectural designer at the design COLLECTIVE, designing movie theaters around the States. He is currently working on a major renovation of a local Seattle theater for the largest theater chain in the country. In addition to architecture work at the company, he also manages the company website, Instagram, and social events. In what little spare time he has, Rubin pursues an active art and photography business, selling his works online every week.
Vienna is an interdisciplinary designer working in user experience design and architectural industries. Currently, she is a designer at Nelson working in the industrial real estate market in Washington State. She also crafts digital products for cooperates and organizations to enhance their brand images, visualizes and analyzes user data, and provides consultations for business strategies based on user researches and testings.
Jonathan 's work prioritizes the empathetic responsibility of architects to make an impact in their cities. Through the completion of a variety of design/build projects, he has had the privilege to experience the positive impact that design can have on the urban fabric. Born in Chicago and raised in the suburbs with a brief stint in Paris, Jonathan Sharp lives and works in Los Angeles. He navigates Los Angeles in a non-traditional way; by foot. He prefers the bus over rail, but prefer a bicycle or skateboard above all else. He holds a Masters of Architecture I degree from Tulane University in New Orleans and was a member of the inaugural Free School of Architecture class in Los Angeles.