Peter Tolkin, AIA LEED AP

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Founder and Design Principal

Peter Tolkin is a registered architect and founding principal of Peter Tolkin Architecture, a design practice focused on residential, retail / mixed-use, and arts-related projects. In his practice Peter advocates for the social and cultural agency of architecture, an approach informed by his prior work as a documentary photographer and his studies with American artists Allan Sekula and Lewis Baltz.

Peter brings ample experience designing and managing projects that enhance the public realm, such as Saladang Song Restaurant,  the mixed-use project Metlox Town Square in Manhattan Beach, the Claremont Village Square expansion, and a Zero Net Energy Commercial Office building at 245 Fair Oaks in South Pasadena. Peter’s residential projects include the Sherman Residence in Encino, the Sun Glass House in Malibu, and the Branch House in Montecito. Peter’s interest in the arts has led him to collaborate with a number of artists on installations including artists Yunhee Min and Charles Gaines. He has also worked on a number of self-generated art projects such as the inflatable installation Dunnage Ball and an accessible restroom design that addresses the politics of gender identity in architecture entitled XYYXXY.

Peter first rose to prominence in 2002 when Architectural Record  named him one of its ten emerging international “Design Vanguard” architects. Since then the firm has been recognized with numerous AIA awards, a James Beard Foundation award, and with publications in the national and international press including The New York Times, Architectural Record, Dwell, Domus, Abitare, and Interior Design.

Peter received a Bachelor of Arts in Art and Art History from UC Santa Cruz, a Master of Fine Arts in Photography from California Institute of the Arts, and a Master of Architecture from Columbia University. Peter continues to practice photography as a complement to his architectural work.