Ask Harry Wolf to describe his work and he may show you a photograph of a Japanese fisherman's robe, a museum piece from the 19th century.
These robes are simply three layers of coarse cotton, dyed the indigo of the sea and stitched together with coarse thread. The rows of stitching, vertical and horizontal in grids, serve the purpose of relieving stress and distributing it across the fabric. Where the wear is the greatest; in the seat, shoulders, and at the edges, the stitching pattern doubles or triples, increasing the resistance to wear at these crucial locations. The result is a highly functional piece that is both both rational, intelligent and beautiful.
To make something beautifully is to make something beautiful. This essential garment embodies this lack of distinction in creation that is inherent to Japanese culture. The beauty arises from an intelligent and careful application of the craft of necessity.
It is this harmonious marriage for which Wolf's work strives; one of acute attention to detail and respect for material and use resulting in a work of inherent beauty.
WOLF ARCHITECTURE was founded in Charlotte in 1966, later shifting to New York and then Los Angeles. In the ensuing 49 years the original commitment to quality of design and attention to detail has not wavered. This has accrued to the benefit of clients private and public; in University and Civic works, Banking, and Fortune 500 companies including IBM, Westinghouse, The Williams Companies, NationsBank, and Superior Oil. The Wolf Architecture portfolio also contains City, County, State and Federal Government projects including two Embassies for the US Department of State and several buildings for the Federal Reserve Bank.
Among International Client’s works are ABN-AMRO Bank World Headquarters, Amsterdam; the Kansai Airport Corporation in Osaka; the regional government of Toulouse, France; the Novartis Pharmaceutical Company in Basel and the Government of Hong Kong.
Project types range the full spectrum from high rise to residential and include planning, urban design and interiors. The firm has received the AIA National Honor Award five times; the nation’s highest award for architecture.
Wolf Architecture designs are continuously recognized for their consistently powerful presence while maintaining an elegant resolution of aesthetic and purpose. The projects illuminate the firm’s institutionalized history of unrelenting attention and experience with material selection, detail and method of construction, all premised on sustainability from beginning concept. They are eminently practical and always beautiful.
We have had the good fortune to design buildings of almost all types, both large and small and the variety we we find vitalizing.
We undertake fewer rather than more projects so that we can spend more time immersed in the design of each.
Our key criterion is the client. Chemistry and commonality of outlook is paramount and results in an experience where seminal thinking in a working relationship of trust and mutual respect provides fertile ground for creative solutions.
Our preoccupation is to create spaces of purpose, synthesized with systems of support and detailed materiality, which are elegant, simple, spare and serene.
Creating sustainable works is essential and intrinsic to our thought process. Our buildings sit well with the land, gracefully connecting to place; thoroughly modern with an ordered, timeless and classic sensibility.