What makes us human after all? MODU’s insight is grounded in research of collective weathers, indoor urbanism, and the incomplete whole


Collective Weathers

MODU defines a new sustainability—one that uses collective action to change daily attitudes about the environment. Architecture adaptable to different environmental conditions redefines the nature(s) of, and in, our cities. We strengthen the resilience of our communities by mediating, rather than separating from, everyday weather. Collective Weathers creates a cultural awareness of climate within our physical world. 

Indoor Urbanism

Architecture is not simply the middle scale of the built environment; it is the intersection between urban and interior scales. Merging these two opposing scales prompts barriers around architecture to recede, changing how we experience weather in our cities and in the interior spaces of buildings. MODU uses new technology—environmental software and data science tools—to strengthen connections to the human experience of Indoor Urbanism.

Incomplete Wholes

MODU has conducted extensive research on the incomplete city, taking incomplete projects in cities around the world as catalysts for urban transformation. The incomplete is also integral to our design approach: architecture itself is always incomplete, embodying many potential scenarios and never a fixed outcome. While the incomplete cannot be completed, it can perhaps be made whole in the connection of people with the environment. This concept of Incomplete Wholes is the foundation of a truly collective experience.  


Projects by MODU have been widely published in books, magazines and newspapers domestically and internationally 
Archinect interview (April 2017) DomusWeb interview (January 2017)
The Architect’s Newspaper (June 24 2016)
Architecture Record (April 2 2016)
Metalocus (February 11 2016)
Interior Design (September 2015)
Archinect (September 2015)
DesignBoom (September 2015)
Frame (September 2015)
Dezeen (August 2015)
Landscape World (August 2015)
Collectively (May 2015)
Design Milk (March 2014)
Bustler (December 2013)
Complex: Art and Design (December 2013)
Archinect (December 2013)
World Architecture News (November 2013) The Architect's Newspaper (November 2013)

BBC (June 2013)
Interior Design (December 2011)
Boston Globe (5 May 2011)
The Architect’s Newspaper (20 April 2011)
DomusWeb (April 2011)
Icon (February 2011)
DomusWeb (18 December 2010)
The Art Newspaper (1 December 2010)
Financial Times (1 December 2010)
The Miami Herald (1 December 2010)
FastCo Design (30 November 2010)
HuffingtonPost (24 November 2010)
The Architect’s Newspaper (7 July 2010)
D News Milano (23 January 2009)
Dialogue (December 2008)
Mark (November 2008)
World Architecture News  (12 June 2008)
Dwell (17 July 2007)


MODU shares our insights about collective weathers, indoor urbanism and the incomplete whole as well as recent news from the studio

09.29.17: Lecture in Atlanta MODU will be lecturing at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. For Phu Hoang, it is a return to the university where he received his Bachelor degree. The lecture will be on September 29th at 3:30pm. More about the lecture here. 

08.02.17: National Endowment for the Arts Award Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem have been selected for the 2017-18 National Endowment for the Arts Japan-US Creative Artists Program. They will conduct research on the link between contemporary Japanese architecture and vernacular “weather rooms.”

07.28.17: Rome Prize Fellowship Ends Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem’s Rome Prize fellowship has ended. The 11 month period has been a transformative period for both of them and for the practice at large.

06.05.17: Open Studios at the American Academy in Rome  Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem will exhibit the past nine months of work at the American Academy in Rome's Open Studios this Thursday, June 8th from 6pm-9pm. More about the Open Studios here. 

06.05.17:  Interview in ArchinectPhu Hoang and Rachely Rotem has been interviewed in the online magazine Archinect. The interview discusses progress that they made as the Rome Prize Fellows at the American Academy in Rome, including the idea of “scaling across disciplines.” Read the interview here.

05.30.17: Lecture in Barcelona
MODU will be lecturing at the IAAC architecture school in Barcelona. The lecture will be on May 30th at 7:30pm. More about the lecture here.

05.18.17: Lecture in Athens MODU will be lecturing at the Patras University of Athens in Athens and Patras. The lecture will be on May 23rd at 7:00pm. More about the lecture here.

04.18.17: Lecture in Madrid MODU will be lecturing at Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (ETSAM) in Madrid. Recent work from Rome will be presented on April 19th, at 12:30pm. More about the lecture here. 

02.11.17: Exhibit at the American Academy in Rome On February 14th, Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem will present "Indoor City," a collaborative project with several Fellows at the American Academy in Rome. Jonathan Berger (Music Composition), Hussein Fancy (Medieval History), Jack Livings (Literature) and Matthew Null (Literature) will evoke the sounds and voices of the "Indoor City," with Christoph Meinrenken providing climate data. More about the exhibit here.

01.11.17: Lecture in Rome
On January 16th, Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem will present their work-- including ongoing work while in Rome-- at the American Academy in Rome. The lecture will begin at 6:30pm in the AAR Lecture Room and can be watched with this live stream. Lecture information here.

01.05.17:  Interview in Domus Magazine Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem has been interviewed in the Italian magazine Domus, which includes a discussion of the work that they are doing as the Founders Rome Prize Fellows at the American Academy in Rome. Their work uncovers Italy’s contemporary ruins; unfinished projects in various states of weather modification. Read the interview here.

09.12.16: Rome Prize Fellowship Begins
Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem have begun their fellowship at the American Academy in Rome. Over the next eleven months, they will research and develop work based on their proposal, “The Mutating Weathers of Rome’s Ruins.” The proposal reframes Italy’s incomplete structures as social and thermal opportunities, following a long history of transforming ruins in the country. More about the Academy here.

09.02.16: Phu Hoang Awarded a Teaching Prize from Architect Magazine Phu Hoang’s graduate studio at Columbia University GSAPP has been awarded the Sloan Prize by Architect magazine. The work of his students in the studio “School Without Classrooms: Micro-Weather Futures of Education Technology” were selected from over eighty schools in architecture. Congratulations to all the students! Read about the prize here. 

07.15.16: MODU Recognized as One of “10 Best Architecture Startups in 2016” The studio has been selected as one of the best architecture startups of the year by Archipreneur magazine. The award is based on the idea that “startups exemplify the most experimental aspects of the profession, and push the envelope when it comes to business models, marketing strategies and design innovation.” Read about the award here.

06.07.16: Phu Hoang's essay "Can You Believe the Weather We're Having?" Published in Climates Book
Phu Hoang's essay, "Can you Believe the Weather We're Having? The Politics of the Weather Report" is published in the exciting new book "Climates: Architecture and the Planetary Imaginary," published by Columbia Books on Architecture and the City and Lars Muller Publishers. The book will launch at the Venice Bienale on May 27th in the Central pavilion.  Read the essay here or purchase the book here.

04.21.16: Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem have won the 2016-2017 Founders Rome Prize in Architecture!
We are honored that the American Academy in Rome has awarded Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem with the 2016-2017 Founders Rome Prize in Architecture. Their proposal, "The Mutating Weathers of Rome's Ruins," will be developed over an eleven month fellowship at the Academy. The Rome Prize ceremony will be at The New School (66 W. 12th Street, NY) on April 21, 2016 at 6:30pm. More than 900 applicants nation-wide applied to the 11 disciplines supported by the Academy. The award, now over 100 years old, “represents the leading edge of contemporary American scholarship and creativity.” More about the Rome Prize here.

01.28.16: MODU is Selected as One of the 2016 Winners of the AIA New Practices New York Award!
We're honored to be selected as one of the winners of the biannual AIA New Practices New York award. The award recognizes architecture firms in their first 10 years of practice. The award is accompanied by a public lecture and exhibition of our work. We will present our work in a lecture (6:30pm on April 6, 2016) at Cosentino (A&D Building, 150 E. 58th St, Suite 399) as well as an exhibition at New York City's Center for Architecture (Opening 6:00pm on May 12, 2016). More about the award here.

10.15.15: Weather in Climate: Schools Book Published MODU's book, "Weather in Climate: Schools," explores the differences inherent in the term "weather in climate"— arguing, essentially, that weather and climate are not the same. Their temporal, dimensional, and political differences are manifested architecturally in a series of studies for near (weather) and distant (climate) futures. This book, the first in a series on building types, focuses on schools and the idea of programmatic "weather rooms." Three school studies experiment with the different forms these "weather rooms" can take in adapting to different global climates. More about the book here.

08.24.15: Published in Dezeen.com
Cloud Seeding, our recent plaza pavilion for Design Museum Holon, has been published in Dezeen.com. The project harnesses the inherent uncontrollable nature of weather to create an engaging public space that changes with each visit. Read the publication here.

05.18.15: Interview in Collectively.org Phu Hoang and Rachely Rotem have been interviewed in the online platform Collectively.org. They discuss both current and past projects, as well as the importance of designing with weather to create "participatory environments" in public spaces. 

05.01.15: MODU exhibiting in the New Faces of Brooklyn Architecture show at BKLN Designs and NYCxDesign MODU will be part of a group of emerging architecture practices in the "New Faces of Brooklyn Architecture" show. Organized by the Architect's Newspaper and AIA New York New Practices committee, the exhibit (designed by Abruzzo Bodziak) will be in the BKLYN Design show from May 8-10, 2015. From May 15-17, the exhibit will be part of NYCxDesign and located in New York's Astor Place plaza (Photo by Pete Deevakul). 

03.21.15: Exhale Coral Reef Is Sustaining Full Coral Growth We're excited that the 5 year old artificial coral reef made from the construction materials of our 2010 project, Exhale, is now sustaining full coral growth and is cited as healthy. MODU worked with Miami-Dade County's local government to help create an artificial reef off the coast of Miami Beach to provide resiliency against extreme weather and foster marine life. Exhale was a 25,000 square foot public art park commissioned by the New York public arts organization, Creative Time, and Art Basel Miami Beach.

01.05.15: MODU lecturing at University of Technology Sydney.
The lecture will present recent projects and research on inherently uncontrolled weather and its interplay with the unpredictability of program. The lecture will occur on February 11th at 6:30pm in Level 5, Building 6, UTS. MODU is in Sydney to teach a 2-week workshop that explores the use of carbon fiber and Tyvek to create "soft structures" that react to both weather and program. This will be the first in a series of workshops between MODU and the University of Technology Sydney. More about the workshop here.

09.15.15: MODU lecturing at the Rhode Island School of Design. Rachely Rotem, currently teaching an advanced design studio at RISD, will present MODU's recent work on the intersection between architecture, weather and climate resilience. The lecture will occur on September 18th at 6:30pm in BEB Lecture Hall 106, RISD. 

06.23.14: Phu Hoang publishes "If the Dust Never Settles" in ARPA Journal #1 Phu Hoang's article, If the Dust Never Settles: Uncontrolling Weather Control has published in Columbia University GSAPP's first ARPA journal. The article explores the notion of weather uncontrol through the lens of modernism's history of control over the environment. Read the article here. 

Copyright 2017 by MODU Architecture, PLLC