Founded in 1995 by Dan Rockhill, Studio 804 is a non-profit organisation and a full-year design studio for graduates that finds its momentum at the intersection of contemporary architecture's most topical concerns: sustainability, affordability and education.
Based out of the Department of Architecture at the University of Kansas, Studio 804 operates in annual bursts of collective effort.
With an ever-changing roster of final-year graduate students, the studio has produced 21 projects to date, including nine LEED Platinum level houses and three Passive House certified projects.
These projects have gone on to become homes and schools: spaces for both private and communal use and engagement; spaces for leisure and for learning.
In addition to addressing mounting concerns of sustainability and innovative design in the era of the Anthropocene, Studio 804 addresses a separate but parallel crisis in architecture: the paucity of material engagement in architectural education.Studio 804 dismantles the boundaries of the ivory tower by allowing students to experience first-hand and collaboratively the various bureaucratic, institutional and community bodies that coalesce to form the architecture that frames our everyday lives. Studio 804 recounts the mission of Studio 804: to offer students of architecture a comprehensive and sincere engagement with building that is both communal and physical, institutional and everyday.
From the early days of first sketches to the immersive education of material making, this book offers an engaging first-person account of the history and legacy of Studio 804, as told by Dan Rockhill.
Project by project, Rockhill describes the way Studio 804 came to be managed and details the achievements to date of its experiential programme, the first of its kind worlwide.
In the end, this is not just a book about an innovative educational model, but a manifesto for the importance of communal and sustainable architecture.