clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

12 Wacky Facts About Bjarke Ingels, Architecture's It-Boy

Bjarke Ingels, the starchitect whose natural cool-kid swagger—like "a nightclub d.j." or "a former boy-band star," says New Yorker—presents itself in the form of ripped-up buildings, swoopy pyramids, and bike-accessible bow ties, recently spoke to DesignBoom about, well, a bit of everything. Here's a dozen of the most random facts gleaned from the interview—from music choice to childhood pets—all delivered Ingel's beat-poet-esque response style:

12. He once wanted to be a graphic novelist. "All comic books take place in built environments, and I was very good at drawing people and animals, and stuff like that, but I hadn't spent much energy drawing buildings. So I thought, maybe I could, and then I became an architect."

11. He reads New Yorker. But only on the plane, just like us!

10. He likes sci-fi, particularly Red Mars by Kim Stanely Robinson: "There's this whole philosophical idealistic discussion about what kind of a state should it be, completely independent of what happens on planet earth. It's ... a political, philosophical book."

9 He's an optimist: "Fear is never the solution to anything ... All evidence shows that we are actually getting smarter. Roughly we are getting 10 IQ points smarter every decade. The speed of innovation is also faster."

8. His dream project is to create the presidential library for Barack Obama. Hmm, an Ingels/Michael Smith collab might be a bit odd...

7. Of all the design/architecture magazines out there, what sort of glossy pub does he read? Wired: "It's like, maybe the one magazine that is most purely dedicated to observing the impact and the source of innovation."

6. On what he likes to see women wear: "That's interesting. A onesie. I definitely like onesies." (Don't worry, nobody gets this.)

5. His music of choice? Scandinavian electro, of course. He gave the all-girl electronica trio Giana Factory such high praise as "pretty good."

4. Speaking of music: "I almost never listen to the radio."

3. Pets? None. Though he "grew up with a cat, it was actually called Black. And he was." Great, because otherwise that name wouldn't make sense.

2. On his artistic ability: "My drawing skills probably froze around when I was 18 ... Now I'm more interested in the story, how the drawings, the layout can help express the stories and communicate them."

1. He's righteous about his field: "Architecture should be about realizing our dreams. Quite often architecture is only about trying to make things look good, or not look bad ... You can really transform the identity and activity of a place ... What is completely wild imagination somehow petrifies into being."

· Interview with Bjarke Ingels of BIG architects [DesignBoom]
· All Bjarke Ingels coverage [Curbed National]