UNStudio - Ben van Berkel

Amsterdam | Seit 1988

UNStudio - Ben van Berkel
Stadhouderskade 113, 1073 AX Amsterdam, Niederlande
Telefon +31 20 570 20 40
Fax +31 20 570 20 41


UNStudio - Ben van Berkel
Ben van Berkel, Architect

Ben van Berkel studied architecture at the Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam and at the Architectural Association in London, receiving the AA Diploma with Honours in 1987. His first projects were built almost immediately after founding Van Berkel & Bos Architectuur Bureau. Among the buildings of this first period are Karbouw, the Remu electricity station, and Villa Wilbrink. Being elected to design the Erasmus Bridge in Rotterdam (1996) profoundly affected his understanding of the role of the architect today and constituted the foundation of his collaborative approach to practising, leading to the foundation of UNStudio in 1999.

In the interim a blue period resulted in the realization of projects such as The Moebius House, Het Valkhof Museum (1998), and the Prince Claus Bridge (2003). Recent projects, which reflect his longstanding interest in the integration of construction and architecture, are: the Mercedes-Benz Museum in Stuttgart and Arnhem Central. He has been visiting lecturer at Princeton and had taught at Columbia University, the Berlage Institute and UCLA. He is currently Professor of Conceptual Design and head of the architecture department at the Staedelschule in Frankfurt am Main (Germany). Ben van Berkel has co-authored a significant number of essays and monographs.

Caroline Bos, Architect

Caroline Bos studied History of Art at Birkbeck College of the University of London. After co-founding Van Berkel& Bos Architectuur Bureau in 1988 she stopped working as journalist to focus on being the internal critic for the practice, writing everything from employment contracts to essays and descriptions of projects that were yet to be designed. In 1999 Ben van Berkel and Caroline Bos founded UNStudio; a network of specialists in architecture, urban development and infrastructure. As an analyst she has been involved in all UNStudio projects. Her observations and synthesis on different programmatic issues has become integral with the work of the different project teams.

With Ben van Berkel she was editor of Forum (1985-86) and the ANY publication ‘Diagram Works’ (1998). She was visiting lecturer at Princeton University and has taught at the Berlage Institute, and UCLA. Her interest in the concept of the architect is reflected in the books she has co-written with Ben Van Berkel: ‘Ben van Berkel Architect’ (1992), ‘Delinquent Visionaries’ (1990), ‘Mobile Forces’ (1994), ‘Move’ (1999), Unfold (2003), 'Design Models' (2006).

Caroline recently completed a Master's Degree in urban and regional planning, at the Geosciences Faculty of the University of Utrecht.

Astrid Piber, Architect

Astrid Piber graduated from the Technical University Vienna in 1997. She joined UNStudio in 1998 and left the office the same year to obtain her Master of Science in AAD at Columbia University, New York, returning the following year. Astrid has worked on urban design projects and international competitions, such as Ponte Parodi in Genova, the Port Masterplan for Las Palmas and the Ground Zero project in collaboration with United Architects. The realized project for the renovation of the façade and interior of the Galleria department Store (Seoul, 2003-2004) initiated her interest and further involvement with urban leisure and retail projects such as the TaLee Plaza Department Store, Kaohsiung (2006-2008).

On projects Astrid is responsible for the management and coordination of aesthetical, technical and commercial aspects. She prepares contracts, organizes the project team and defines the design-input. She has intense contact with our clients and advisors and manages external relations in balance with internal project coordination.
Along with the organization of such internal processes her existing interest in the organization of an architectural office lead her to fulfill the role of Quality Coordinator (since summer 2000); Astrid has been an Associate of UNStudio and a member of its Management Team since 2006. Since 2008 Astrid is a Partner of UNStudio.

Harm Wassink

Harm Wassink obtained his architectural degree from the TU Delft in 1989. His career at UNStudio (formerly van Berkel & Bos) commenced in 1992 after working in Belgium. Harm worked on numerous built Dutch projects, most notably the Moebius House (1998) and the NMR facility (2000) in various capacities, thus gaining a wide-ranging practical, technical, design and management experience. Harm became an Associate in 2002. In spite of his managerial responsibilities, he also remains actively involved in projects, such as the extension for the Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam (2007) and the Arnhem Master Plan (2012).

Within the Management team his focus is on finances, human resources, office management and planning. He chairs the financial management team, supervising accounting and contracting processes and linking those with the day-to-day office management and with UNStudio’s human resource management, starting from recruitment and selection of staff members to career planning. Since 2006 Harm is a Partner of UNStudio.

Gerard Loozekoot, Architect

Gerard Loozekoot completed his architectural studies at the TU Delft in 1998. He worked for several Dutch offices before entering UNStudio in 2000. His interest in and knowledge of large-scale urban and infrastructure work developed with projects such as City Centre development Nieuwegein (NL) 320.000 m2, A2 city ring ‘s Hertogenbosch (NL) and the design of the highway stretch along N57 (NL). Gerard’s aim is the implementation of design strategies such as deep-planning, with focus on infrastructure and urban design projects. Recent architecture projects include the Park/Rijn tower in Arnhem, the Teahouse in Kantwijk and the Theatre in Lelystad.

Within the studio Gerard’s responsibility has evolved from chairing the weekly project team meetings to organizing different project teams and setting up multidisciplinary teams with consultants and collaborators. His interest in the organization of project processes and contracts, in close collaboration with a variety of public and private clients, has served to foster UNStudio’s network ambitions. Gerard was invited to join the Management Team and became an Associate in 2005. Since 2008 Gerard is a Partner of UNStudio.

UNStudio - Ben van Berkel


UNStudio is an international architectural practice, situated in Amsterdam since 1988, with extensive experience in the fields of urbanism, infrastructure, public, private and utility buildings on different scale levels. At the basis of UNStudio are a number of long-term goals, which are intended to define and guide the quality of our performance in the architectural field. We strive to make a significant contribution to the discipline of architecture, to continue to develop our qualities with respect to design, technology, knowledge and management and to be a specialist in public network projects. We see as mutually sustaining the environment, market demands and client wishes that enable our work, and we aim for results in which our goals and our client’s goals overlap.

The expertise of UNStudio’s office personnel spans the gamut from technical and design professional architects to authorities in the fields of management and theory. The internal organizational core of the practice revolves around internal communication committees from which ideas and decisions permeate outwards and are absorbed. In these platforms specialists in their respective fields and senior personnel continuously bring our processes of planning, finance, acquisition, public relations, quality and organization to the next level. This enables us to minimize communication lines and combine the experience and expertise gained from the various projects, alongside the content developed in the knowledge platforms.

UNStudio works as a part of a united network. A highly flexible methodological approach has been developed which incorporates parametric designing and collaborations with leading specialists in other disciplines. Drawing on the knowledge found in related fields facilitates the exploration of comprehensive strategies which combine programmatic requirements, construction and movement studies into an integrated design. With this network approach UNStudio can set-up multidisciplinary teams from early stages onwards in order to create an efficient and integrated working process. This dynamic nature of the practice enables the exploration of new territories and the adaptation to future challenges.


2011 RIBA International Awards 2011 (Galleria Centercity, Cheonan, KR)

2010 IALD Award of Merit, Lighting design (Collector's Loft, NY)
2010 ULI 2010 Award for Excellence: EMEA (Music Theatre, Graz)
2010 5 Star award: Best Mixed-Use in China, Asia Pacific International Property awards (Galleria Cheonan)
2010 Award of Merit, AIA New York City (New Amsterdam Plein & Pavilion, New York)
2010 IIDA Annual Interior Design Award (Music Theatre, Graz)

2009 Cityscape, Highly Commended, Commercial/Mixed use – Built (Star Place, Kaohsiung)
2009 Red Dot Award, Best of The Best, MYchair

2008 Fellow RIBA, Hugo Haring Preis Guter Bauten, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Germany.
2008 Architekturpreis Beton 2008, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Germany.
2008 Second prize Wallpaper*Design Award 2008, VilLa NM, Great Brittan.
2008 German Design Prize 2008, Exhibition Mercedes-Benz Museum, Germany.

2007 Bienal Miami + Beach 2007, Theatre Agora, Gran Bienal Prize, USA.
2007 Silver Award Single Family Home, VilLA NM, Bienal Miami + Beach 2007, USA.
2007 Gyproc Trophy 2007, Theatre Agora, the Netherlands.
2007 Charles Jencks Award 2007 – Vision Built, London.
2007 Architect of the year 2006 – 2007, the Netherlands.
2007 Architekturpreis 2007, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Germany.
2007 Silber Designpreis 2007, Circle Sofa, Berlin, Germany.
2007 Nominee Mies van der Rohe Award 2007, Mercedes-Benz Museum.

2006 Reddot design Award, Circle Sofa, Essen, Germany.
2006 Ingenieurbau Preis 2006, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Berlin.

2005 Te Papa Museum, Wellington Waterfront, Waitangi, New Zealand.
2005 Nominee Architecture Award Almere 2005, La Defense, Almere, the Netherlands.
2005 Nominee Mies van der Rohe Award, La Defense, Almere, the Netherlands.
2005 Schreuders Award 2005, Parking garage Arnhem, the Netherlands.
2005 ANWB Award, best designed parking garage, Arnhem Parking garage, Arnhem, the Netherlands.
2005 Lighting Award, Galleria Department Store, Seoul, South Korea.
2005 Nominee Rietveld Award, Prince Claus bridge, Utrecht, the Netherlands.
2005 AIT Best of Europe, Color Award, La Defense, Almere, the Netherlands.
2004 Belgian Steel Award, Prince Claus bridge, Utrecht, the Netherlands.
2004 British Steel Award, Prince Claus bridge, Utrecht, the Netherlands.
2003 1822-Kunstpreis 2003, Mercedes-Benz Museum, Stuttgart, Germany.
2001 Nominee Mies van der Rohe Award, Museum ‘Het Valkhof’, Nijmegen, the Netherlands.
2000 Rietveld Prize Lecture, Utrecht.

1999 Dutch Concrete Award, Möbius House, ‘t Gooi, the Netherlands.
1997 Member of Honor of the BDA (Bond Deutsche Architekten).
1991 Charlotte Köhler Award, Amsterdam. 1986 British Council Fellowship. 1983 Eileen Gray Award