Christina Seilern

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Christina Seilern
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Alma mater
  • Wellesley College
  • Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture

Christina Seilern (born in 1970) is a British-Austrian architect. She is the founder and lead designer of London-based Studio Seilern Architects (SSA), established in 2006. With a core philosophy of anti-specialization, Christina has designed buildings across geographies, scales, and typologies . Her diverse portfolio includes the Andermatt Concert Hall in Switzerland, the G.W. Annenberg Performing Arts Centre of Wellington College, El Gouna Conference and Concert Hall, a mixed-use masterplan for Boksto 6 in Lithuania, the Gota Dam Residence in Zimbabwe, and a growing list of residential, cultural, and commercial developments. Before establishing her practice she was the Founding Partner and Director of Rafael_Viñoly’ London office.

Early Life and Education

Christina Seilern was born and raised in Switzerland, before moving to the United States to study biology at Wellesley_College in Massachusetts. She soon pivoted from biology to architecture, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts’ degree in Architecture in 1992 and supplementing her studies with the first three architecture studio courses at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. [1] She continued her architectural education at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation (GSAPP), under the deanship of the acclaimed Swiss architects Bernard Tschumi , where she obtained her Master of Architecture in 1996. [2]


After completing her studies, Christina joined Rafael Viñoly in New York, starting in a junior position as a modelmaker and quickly moving up the ranks to director . After working with Rafael Viñoly Architects (RVA) for six years, she decided to relocate to London at the age of 29. Notably, when she asked Viñoly if she could quit so as to begin her new life in Europe, he suggested that she continued to represent and expand the practice as a Founding Director of RVA’s London office. She lead the RVA London Office from 2002 until 2006, when she established how own architecture practice Studio Seilern Architects. [3]

During her tenure as Founding Partner and Director of Rafael Viñoly Architects’ London office, Christina was responsible for the firm’s award-wining European portfolio, heading now iconic projects including the ‘Walkie-Talkie’ of 20 Fenchurch Street, Curve_(theatre), Colchester’s Firstsite, Mahler 4 office tower in Amsterdam and Wageningen_University_and_Research Plant Research Centre in the Netherlands. Under her direction, Rafael Viñoly Architects London grew from a one-person effort to a coordinated studio of over fifty architects.

In 2006 Christina Seilern established her own practice, Studio Seilern Architects, to design the Gota Dam Residence in collaboration with Muzia Sforza. The private residence in Zimbabwe was completed in 2012 and received RIBA International Award the following year [4]. Soon after Christina began work on a private residence in Lauenen, Switzerland and various competitions in the mixed-use sector.

In addition to residential and commercial projects, Christina Seilern is experienced in designing concert halls, performing arts centres and cultural venues. Selected projects of her include award-winning Performing Arts Centre at Wellington College completed in 2018[5] and Andermatt Concert Hall in Switzerland[6], which has been opened in June 2019 with an inaugural concert given by Berlin Philharmonic. Later that year in December 2019, the studio completed works on a complex of two gourmet restaurants on the Gutsch peak above the alpine village of Andermatt[7].

The practice is currently working on a conference and concert hall[8] in the seaside city of El Gouna, which hosted the El Gouna Film Festival in 2020[9] and aims to become a lead cultural center in the region[10]. Meanwhile, construction works are underway for the mixed-use heritage development masterplan Boksto 6 in Lithuania[11] and several residential projects all around Europe.

Christina is a frequent speaker and juror both in the UK and abroad for organizations and events including AR MIPIM Awards[12], World Architecture Festival[13], the RIBA EyeLine[14], LEAF Awards[15] and PAD London[16].

Design Philosophy

Significantly influenced by her studies under Kenneth Frampton at Columbia GSAPP and her years at RVA, Christina is more interested in the architectural idea rather than a semantic approach to the profession[17]. She approaches each project as a unique endeavor, unburdened by preconceived notions of aesthetics, generating its own rules through a dialogue between the client. Christina leads her practice with an essentially anti-specialization approach to architecture, resisting specialization in one typology of building or design, apparent in her studio’s diverse portfolio encompassing from large scale cultural centers to small and remote residential projects.

Selected Projects

Built Projects

  • 2007 – Tomasz Starzweski Boutique, London
  • 2008 – Stanhope Gate, London
  • 2009 – The Beauchamp Club
  • 2010 - Hewer Street Residence, London
  • 2011 - Kensington Residence, London
  • 2012 – Oxford Gardens Residence, London
  • 2012 - Lauenen Residence, Gstaad, Switzerland
  • 2012 – Gota Dam Residence, Zimbabwe
  • 2013 - Albion Barn, Oxford
  • 2013 – Crescent Drilling, Oklahoma
  • 2016 - Ansdell Street, London
  • 2018- G.W. Annenberg Performing Arts Centre, Berkshire
  • 2019- Andermatt Concert Hall, Andermatt, Switzerland
  • 2019- Oak Cottage, Oxford
  • 2019- Gutsch Restaurant, Andermatt, Switzerland
  • 2020- Koilada Villa, Greece
  • BOKSTO 6, Vilnius, Lithuania
  • El Gouna Conference and Concert Hall, Egypt
  • Paros Residence, Greece



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