Akoaki is a Detroit-based architecture and design studio founded by Anya Sirota and Jean Louis Farges. Since 2007, Akoaki has established a reputation for innovative and resonant projects that critically engage the social, spatial, and material realities of place. Bridging the commonly perceived divide between social and aesthetic practice, the work explores urban interventions, perceptual scenographies, and pop actions as responses to complex and contested urban scenarios.
Akoaki’s design philosophy recognizes the pleasure and value of collective, aesthetic experience. The creative process, supported by intensive research and fieldwork, builds on existing dynamics and forges relationships between diverse networks of people. The resulting set of inter-related experimental works produces conceptually and materially surprising, unrestrictive, and inclusive environments.
Anya Sirota is an architectural designer, researcher, and educator. Her work, situated at the intersection of architecture and urban design, explores how a distinct synthesis of aesthetics, social enterprise, and cultural programming can offer experimental strategies for equitable urban transformation. In parallel to her practice, Sirota is an associate professor and associate dean at the University of Michigan’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning, where she also directs the Michigan Architecture Prep Studio. Sirota holds a degree from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, and BA in Modern Culture and Media from Brown University.
JEAN LOUIS FARGES
Farges is a designer and cultural curator working at the intersection of art, media, and architecture. Through intensive fieldwork and collaborative processes, he explores techniques for cultural activation at the urban scale. His design and photography have been published and exhibited internationally. Prior to moving to Michigan, Farges practiced in New York City and Paris, France.