James McKenna is a recent graduate from Temple University’s Bachelor of Architecture program. At University, James acted as Project Manager for the Freedom By Design team whose mission is to provide dignity, safety, and comfort to members of the community through the design and building of small scale interventions. His final research at University revolved around the study of overlaying cultural histories upon the America landscape and allowing these histories to inform design decision facilitating the relational dialogue of power in reference to knowledge and access in reference to resource, for which he received the Diener Brick Company Award. James’s work has been on display at the 2010 Tyler Annual Show, Philadelphia Community College, PSFS Building, Cira Center, and Center for Architecture Philadelphia.
James is currently a first degree Black Belt in the Chang Moo Kwan Martial Arts system. These skills are seldom used, but the sheer knowledge of the physical brutality they could unleash offers James a strategic advantage in making his argument during the schematic design and design development stages. Further, he is beginner Kenjutsu swordsmen, a licensed scuba diver, and a recent National Parks enthusiast. He is enrolled in the IDP and NCARB Certificate programs and looks to augment his current skill set with continued training and practical execution of fabrication techniques, inventive material assemblies, and parametric design methodologies. This cross-section between deadly martial arts skills, academic research, and future design trajectory grounds James with a strong foundation to begin to build his design future.