Matteo Cainer – Founder, Matteo Cainer Architects

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Matteo Cainer is both an architect and a curator based in London and Paris and he is the founder and director of Matteo Cainer Architects and Associate Professor at the Ecole Speciale d’Architecture in Paris.

Matteo who has a master’s degree from the University of Architecture in Venice, Italy has worked and collaborated with a number of celebrated international practices including: Peter Eisenman in New York City, CoopHimmelb(l)au in Vienna, and Arata Isozaki Associati in Milano. During these years he worked on international competitions and a variety of projects, as both project architect and senior designer.

Projects ranged from the 75.000sqm Cidade da Cultura de Galicia in Santiago de Compostela Spain, to the 68,000 seat stadium for the Arizona Cardinals in Phoenix Arizona (USA) opened in 2005, the Akron Art Museum in Ohio (USA) ingurated in 2007 and the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin, Germany which opened in 2005.

In 2004 he was Assistant Director to Kurt W. Forster for the 9th International Architecture Exhibition La Biennale di Venezia, METAMORPH, an exhibition that focused on the fundamental, theoretical and practical changes taking place in contemporary architecture. His role was of assistant curator, coordinator of exhibition design, and liaison to the contributing architects and artists.


Back in 2005, Matteo worked for Arata Isozaki Associati in Milano on the Citylife project a mixed use development with Hotel and residential. In 2006 he moved to London where he headed for the following 5 years the Design Research Studio at Fletcher Priest Architects, department that explored and challenged the preconceived notions of design through experimentation and international competitions.

In 2006 he was appointed Curator of the London Architecture Biennale with the show ‘The World in One City- A Sketch for London’ and In 2010 is the Curator of the “Pavillon Speciale”a new annual international summer architectural series that gives both emerging and acclaimed architects the opportunity to build a temporary installation in the heart of Paris. Currently he is launching a new architecture series ‘Architecture Whispers’ a series of intimate multidisciplinary and cross-cultural conversations among architects, critics and designers based on the current trends in the architectural discourse. A critical examination and re-thinking of architecture as a broadly conceived imaginative discipline that has a wide-ranging role in society.

Matteo’s academia; he was visiting critic at the Bartlett School of Architecture, Pratt Architecture School, and Columbia University and at the Dessau Institute of Architecture in Germany. In 2009 he starts teaching at École Spéciale d’Architecture in Paris, where he is now associate professor.

The work of Matteo Cainer has been published in numerous books and international magazines, furthermore he has written and edited a number of books and articles in the field of architecture and design, including: Investigate, Ask, Tell, Draw, Build profiling the international Danish architectural practice 3XN. He is both an Italian and British licensed architect. Since 2010 he heads his own practice and is Associate Professor at the École Spéciale d’Architecture (ESA).

Matteo Cainer Architects: is a multidisciplinary practice with a distinct conceptual approach to architecture and design. With projects that vary in scale from urban planning, landscape and building design, to installation and exhibition design, the work is informed by a continuously evolving dialogue and interaction between different disciplines.

With base in London and in Paris, its various collaborations have allowed it to explore Wider horizons, contributing therefore to the development of the practice internationally. At the heart of its design philosophy is an enthusiastic ambition to creatively harness new technologies through innovative thinking, a bridge between technology, art and design, generating an architecture that address contemporary issues in emerging sectors and that evolves through concepts, as a series of built ideas.