Kas Oosterhuis

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Kas Oosterhuis
Known forArchitecture
MovementHyper architecture, Digitecture
AwardsDutch Design Prize, National Steel Prize, Funda Award, Proholz Prize, Business Week/Architectural Record Award, Zeeuwse Architectuurprijs, OCÉBNA Prize for industrial Architecture


Kas Oosterhuis (1951) is Dutch architect, together with visual artist Ilona Lénárd the founder of the innovation studio ONL, professor Hyperbody at the TU Delft from 2000 to 2016, professor at Qatar University as from 2017. With his office ONL he realized a number of key projects representative of the digital age: the Waterpavilion (1997) at Neeltje Jans, the Web of North-Holland (2002) at the World Expo at Haarlemmermeer, the A2 Cockpit (2005) in the Sound Barrier at Leidsche Rijn, Utrecht, the mixed use cultural center Bálna Budapest (2012) and the Liwa Tower (2014) in Abu Dhabi.


Kas Oosterhuis studied architecture at the TU Delft from 1980 - 1979. His final project the Strook door Nederland was mentored by Rem Koolhaas, Kas Oosterhuis proposed a radical urban scheme concentrating all future building activities in the large 5 km wide and 200 km long strip, leaving the rest of holland to develop into a jungle. His first commission was to design a 1:20 scale villa with LEGO bricks. In 1991 he completed his first housing project the Patiowoningen at the Dedemsvaartweg, and urban design scheme by OMA. From the beginning of their practice Kas Oosterhuis worked closely together with his partner in life and business visual artist Ilona Lénárd, their artistic and architectural DNA strings would regularly interlace in joint projects. In 2000 Kas Oosterhuis accepted a 0.4 fte professorship at the Faculty of Architecture at the TU Delft. Kas Oosterhuis has become known internationally for his radical digital approach to architecture as from the earliest design stages up to the computer numerical controlled production of the building components, of which process the A2 Cockpit in the Sound Barrier is a prime example. Kas Oosterhuis has won and subsequently built two important international competitions: the Bálna Budapest and the LIWA tower in Abu Dhabi. Between 1990 and now Kas Oosterhuis has delivered hundreds of lectures worldwide at universities and conferences. As from September 2017 Kas Oosterhuis has accepted a full professorship at the Qatar University in Doha.

Fusion of Art and Architecture on a digital platform[edit]

Between 1988 and 1989 Kas Oosterhuis and Ilona Lénárd lived and worked one year in the Van Doesburg studio-house in Meudon near Paris. In that year they decided to bring their art and architecture work together in a joint practice, under the motto of “The Fusion of Art and Architecture on a Digital Platform”. In their early years of coöperation they organized the events Artificial Intuition (1990, Gallery Aedes, Berlin), The Synthetic Dimension (1991, De Zonnehof Amersfoort), Sculpture City (1994, Ram Gallery Rotterdam), and realized 20 public art and architectural projects: the inflatable weblounge ParaSITE (1996, Rotterdam Festivals), the Musicsculpture in Oldemarkt (1998), the TT Monument in Assen (2002), housing projects Patio Housing The Hague (1991, Dedemsvaartweg) and De Kassen (1991, Kattenbroek Amersfoort), where Ilona Lénárd mapped colorful dazzle paintings on the entire facade, the housing project Dancing Facades (1992) in De Hunze in Groningen, the Waterpavilion (1997) at Neeltje Jans, featuring the complex Hydra structure on the basis of an intuitive 3d computer sketch, and later the housing project Fside (2007) in Amsterdam. Ilona Lénárd, born and educated in Hungary, was also instrumental in setting up the ONL Hungary office (2007 - 2017) in Budapest to realize the Bálna Budapest, originally named the CET Budapest, and to enter a number of competition projects among others the City Hall competition Budapest (2008, third prize).

Design to production[edit]

Kas Oosterhuis aims at "changing the building industry from within" by his digital design to manufacturing approach, which was developed with the design of the Waterpavilion (1997, Neeltje Jans). Kas Oosterhuis and his team teamed up with the steel manufacturer and invented a direct file to factory procedure, producing only those data that the CNC machines of the steel manufacturer needs to produce the building components from the raw material. Autolisp routines were used for the data exchange. For the Web of North-Holland (2002) ONL used a variety of programs, including 3d digitizing the handcrafted model, Maya for the digital 3d model and the construction of the complex geometry, and Autolisp routines for extracting the data needed for the cutting of the steel plates. The A2 Cockpit in the Sound Barrier the step was fully scripted, therewith replacing 3d modeling as the leading design tool for computer programming. Before the term parametric design became popular in the last decade as propagated by among others https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrik_Schumacher Patrik Schumacher] of ZHA, ONL practiced parametric design as from the design to production procedure of the Waterpavilion in 1997. One of the advantages of the digital design to production procedures is that it allows for an affordable complexity, whereas the constituting components have their own unique dimensions and shape. Design to production methods facilitate https://www.mckn.eu/wiki/home/ mass customization] of the building components, producing series of one.

Hyperbody TU Delft[edit]

Kas Oosterhuis accepted in the year 2000 a 0,4 fte professorship (professor from practice) at the Faculty of Architecture at the TU Delft. He renamed the chair of Digital Architecture into Hyperbody. Hyperbody specialized in Nonstandard Architecture and Interactive Architecture. Up to 2017 Hyperbody has run a master design course delivering students with hands-on design programming skills. Hyperbody has accepted a dozen PHD candidates between 2002 and 2015, among them Dr Henriette Bier and Dr Nimish Biloria, who joined Hyperbody as assistant professors in 2007. Hyperbody alumni found their way into internationally renowned offices like Foster and Partners, Zaha Hadid Architects and Heatherwick Studio, and nationally into the offices of UN Studio, https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_Pesman_(architect) Cepezed] and ONL, or founded their own practices.


Kas Oosterhuis has written and/or edited 16 books explaining his visionary view on digital architecture, the most well known books are Programmable Architecture (2000, L’Arcaedizioni), Architecture Goes Wild (2001, 010 Publishers), Hyperbodies, towards an Emotive Architecture (2003, Birkhäuser), ONLogic, Speed and Vision (2008, Images Publishing), and Towards A New Kind of Building (2011, Nai Publishers), a designer’s guide to nonstandard architecture. Kas Oosterhuis is editor in chief of the scientific journal Next Generation Building (founded 2001, Baltzer Publishers, TU Delft), and has organized a series of Game Set and Match conferences at the TU Delft (GSM I in 2002, GSM II in 2006, GSM III in 2016). Kas Oosterhuis was editor in chief of the Game Set and Match books, edited the book Hyperbody, First Decade of Interactive Architecture (2012, Jap Sam Books), and edited the book series Interactive Architecture iA#1, iA#2, iA#3, iA#4, and iA#5 (2006 - 2012, Jap Sam Books).



  • 2007 Dutch Design Prize [Cockpit in Acoustic Barrier]
  • 2007 National Steel Prize [Cockpit in Acoustic Barrier]
  • 2007 Mies van der Rohe award nomination [Cockpit in Acoustic Barrier]
  • 2006 Funda Award [Hessing Cockpit in Acoustic Barrier]
  • 2005 Proholz Prize, Austria [Schmetterling Wingman]
  • 2002 European Aluminium Award nomination [TT Monument and Web of North*Holland]
  • 1999 Mies van der Rohe award nomination [Saltwaterpavilion]
  • 1999 National Steelprize nomination [Saltwaterpavilion]
  • 1998 Business Week / Architectural Record Award [Garbagetransferstation Elhorst/ Vloedbelt]
  • 1998 Zeeuwse Architectuurprijs [Saltwaterpavilion]
  • 1996 OCÉBNA Prize for industrial architecture [Garbagetransferstation Elhorst/ Vloedbelt]
  • 1996 National Steelprize honorable mention [Garbagetransferstation Elhorst/ Vloedbelt]



  • 2007 iA # 1 Interactive Architecture (bookzine), Episode Publishers Rotterdam
  • 2006 ONL monography, Images publishers Australia
  • 2006 ONL Hyperbody Logic, AADCU publisher, Beijing, China
  • 2006 GameSetandMatch II, Episode Publisher
  • 2004 BCN Speed and Friction, ESARQ Barcelona
  • 2004 Gamesetandmatch, TU Delft
  • 2003 hyperbodies towards an e*motive architecture Birkhäuser Verlag
  • 2002 architecture goes wild 010 publishers
  • 2002 programmable architecture l’ARCAEDIZIONI
  • 2001 Emotive Architecture Inaugural Speech, Faculty of Architecture TU Delft
  • 1999 vectorial bodies archis 6/99
  • 1998 Kas Oosterhuis architect Ilona Lénárd visual artist 010 publishers
  • 1995 sculpture city book+cd rom 010 publishers
  • 1990 the open volume wiederhall 12



External links[edit]