colab studio, llc
Founded in 1999, our studio strives to be a cooperative-laboratory (co-lab) for art and architecture, bringing ideas together, and blurring the line that would normally define one discipline as separate from another. Working simultaneously with studio, installation, and public art as well as residential and commercial architecture, creates a synergy that strengthens the concepts, ideas, and end results for every project we work on.
Comprised of two partners with fine arts education and architectural licenses, plus a small staff of artists, architectural interns, and a poet, our experience range provides us the capability of engaging in a wide variety of projects.
colab studio’s work has been recognized with over 25 local, national, and international design awards, published in dozens of books and periodicals, and taken part in many exhibitions.
Our working process explores the relationship between community and the physical environment. Common goals with our work are to question and define aspects of our environment including nature, urbanism, community and individual responsibility.
Maria, born in 1971 and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, obtained an MFA at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London and Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Arizona. She has been a member of the American Institute of Architects since 1999, and curated the Arizona AIA Gallery (2000-2003). To date she has managed several projects ranging in size up to $140 million and 300,000 SF.
Matthew Salenger was born in San Francisco in 1971 and raised on the island of Maui, Hawaii. Collegiate studies in history, art, and architecture took him to vastly different environments such as Washington State, Arizona, and London. He has a master’s degree in Architecture (with honors) from the Architectural Association of London and Bachelor of Science in Design (with honors) from Arizona State University. He has managed projects ranging in size up to $13 million and 30,000 SF.
Karl was born in 1982 outside of Detroit, but raised in Phoenix after his family moved to Arizona in 1988. He graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture. He went on to get his Masters of Architecture degree from the Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) in Los Angeles. He has traveled extensively through Europe and Northern America, but ultimately returned to Arizona to work. He has completed a wide range of computer generated design work for both architecture and sculpture.
Sherwood was born and raised in Tempe, Arizona in 1986. After graduating with a Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Arizona in 2009, he acted as a team leader for the U of A Solar Decathlon Team. In 2012, he completed a Master of Science degree from the Emergent Technologies and Design graduate program at the Architectural Association in London. While in London, Sherwood studied parametric design approaches and non-traditional fabrication techniques.
An Arizona native, Ron Phares was born in Phoenix in 1971 and has subsequently lived in many different cities, towns and villages in the state. He received his Bachelor’s degree from Arizona State in Religious Studies, and Master’s Degrees from Thunderbird (The Garvin School for International Management), and Austin Theological Seminary. The quest for just the right words has found him living in Australia, Europe, China, Southeast Asia, Texas and Utah. A former editor and publisher of a number of Arizona periodicals, Ron is currently pursuing Unitarian Universalist ministry in addition to writing architectural and public art poetry.