Gregory Thorpe
Senior Architect Mail

I have long taken to heart a quote attributed to Emile Zola the French, literary naturalist.  “There are two men inside the artist, the poet and the craftsman. One is born a poet. One becomes a craftsman.” 

I was born an artist, drawing my experience of the world with an intuitive sensibility to space, material, form, color, mood and experience.  I have spent my life endeavoring to become the latter, honing my intellectual and manual acuities through a meditative practice in the assembly, disassembly, reconfiguration, destruction and reformation of those artistic sensibilities.

Throughout my childhood I spent summers and holidays at my grandparents’ home in Amagansett, just around the corner from the Gwathmey Siegel house. During those formative years on the East End I was deeply influenced by the local artistic, literary and architectural communities, particularly by the presence of Willem De Kooning, Dan Flavin, Richard Avedon and Charles Gwathmey.

I earned my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago where my studies were focused on multi-media sculpture, furniture making and architecture.  Subsequent to my undergraduate studies I spent several years running an architectural metal fabrication and furniture making company in Chicago, producing heirloom quality pieces and residential design-build projects.

I went on to earn my Master of Architecture degree at The Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles where my research and thesis focused on manual and digital representation techniques, mixed-use master planning, and architectural interventions in areas affected by extreme environmental changes. In the years after my graduate work, I had many opportunities to collaborate on and publish work with a broad range of architects and artists working on projects that ranged from multi-media installations, to prefabricated housing in Joshua Tree, CA, to educational facilities in the valleys surrounding Los Angeles and on to large-scale, mixed-use projects in Abu Dhabi and Xinjiang, China.

I have since returned to Amagansett to be near family and the ocean again, and to specialize in luxury residential architecture, working as the Director of The Lacuna Project, a Senior Associate with Roger Ferris + Partners, earlier on as a Project Manager for Stelle, Lomont, Rouhani Architects and now with James Merrell Architects.

In all of my work I allow each project, each venture, to inform the medium that I select to best achieve its aims.  I use a broad range of media in my work, from graphite and paper, to digital processing codes, steel and cast glass, photography and film, and architectural interventions to name a few among them.  In all territories, the project behind my work is the ongoing refinement of the craft within the ideas, media, material, space and time that gives the work agency.

Integral to my life work is my family who I love dearly and adventure with as often as I am able; and I suppose also, my other adventures, sailing, surfing, flying and motorcycling.