Myers and Cornish: the Future of Interior Architecture

"Gray" magazine open to the article "Design Schooled" Aug-Sep 2017. Portrait of Julie Myers by Nate Watters. Photo: Mark Bocek.

Myers and Cornish: the Future of Interior Architecture

If you’re not impressed with Julie Myers and her Interior Architecture Department at Cornish College of the Arts, you’re very hard to impress. In her laudatory article on Myers, “Design Schooled” in Gray magazine, Stacy Kendall clearly was.

If you’re the head of a college department, you wish people would talk about your work the way Stacy Kendall recently did about Cornish Interior Architecture Chair Julie Myers: “The more I learned by talking to Myers, the more it became clear that the future of design is expressed in her vision of a multifaceted approach.” Kendall was writing in Gray magazine in an article, Design Schooled. The kicker for the article pretty much sums up her opinion: “A Seattle interior designer at the top of her game founds the new Interior Architecture Department at Cornish College of the Arts to shape the future of design.”

Only a handful of of interior architecture (IA) programs exist in America. The term “interior architecture” refers to the designers attention being constrained to the practice of traditional interior design—the teaching of which has a 50-year history at Cornish. IA goes past appearance to address functionality and a whole lot more; any part of a building’s structure that is not structural, the architect’s domain, is its concern.

Kendall’s fascination with Myer’s program began with the department’s approach to the IA classroom, which Myers has named the Experience Studio. “Here sophomores, juniors, and seniors work side by side, mentoring one another, collaborating on projects, and honing their skills, as they would in a professional design firm.”

Myers holds a BFA and MFA from the fountainhead of Interior Design, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago with academic stops at Parsons School of Design, Whitney Museum of American Art, Cooper Hewitt Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, and Graham Foundation Studies. It doesn’t get more legit than that in the field. Myers has a wide-ranging practice designing interiors for large scale campuses to the interiors of custom aircraft.