Maria Charneco, Alfredo Lérida, Guillermo López, and Anna Puigjaner established their Barcelona-based firm MAIO Studio in 2011. RECORD asked them five questions about their work at the Chicago Architecture Biennial. Scroll through the slideshow above to see some of their key projects.

Architectural Record: Tell us about your practice. What differentiates you from other firms?

MAIO is an architectural office that works on spatial systems that allow theoretical and practical positions to converge. This approach allows the practice to develop a wide range of projects, from furniture or exhibition design, to housing or urban planning. MAIO’s members combine professional activities with academic, research, editorial, and curatorial ones.

How do you get into the creative headspace?

Since we are four partners, all creative decisions result from a dialogue. We like to think we create a narration, a story behind every project.

Who are your design heroes?

We prefer to think of architecture as a collective task.

What do you hope to contribute to the Chicago Biennial?

Our proposal “The Grand Interior” aims to show the new condition of the domestic sphere. It represents interconnected canonical and popular domestic spaces by means of proposing an interior, made of interiors, where massiveness of architecture has been removed and rebalanced towards objects, furniture, appliances, and technology as a primary and often neglected layer of architecture.

Most importantly, when it comes to pizza, deep dish or thin crust?

Two of us for deep, two of us for thin crust, so fifty-fifty. We’ll have to keep up the debate.


The Chicago Architecture Biennial runs from September 19, 2017, to January 7, 2018. Read more of our coverage of the event here.