Kate Orff

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Kate Orff is the founder and design director of SCAPE, a firm focussing on landscape architecture, broadly construed. She has designed projects across the United States and internationally.[1] She lectures widely in the U.S. and abroad on the topic of urban landscape and new paradigms of thinking, collaborating and designing for the anthropocene era. Kate also teaches interdisciplinary seminars and design studios at Columbia University.[2] In 2017, Orff was the recipient of a "Genius Grant" from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.[3]

Orff was educated at the University of Virginia and Harvard University.[4] She was listed first by Elle magazine in 2011 as one of nine women involved as "fixers" for mankind.[5]

She is the Director of the Urban Design Program at Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation, where she is founder and co-director of the Urban Landscape Lab.[6][7][8] According to the Urban Landscape Lab biographical information her office, SCAPE, has won local and national design awards. She was named a Dwell Magazine ‘Design Leader’ and H&G’s 50 For the Future of Design and received a 2008 National ASLA award (Communications category).[4]

In 2012 Orff was named a United States Artists Fellow.[9]

In 2014, Orff was recognized for her work designing the 103rd Street Community Garden, a winning site of Built by Women New York City,[10] a competition launched by the Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation during the fall of 2014 to identify outstanding and diverse sites and spaces designed, engineered and built by women.[11]


  1. ^ "SCAPE". Rising Currents. Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art. Retrieved 2015-03-08.
  2. ^ Speakers - Kate Orff: Landscape architect, Technology, Entertainment, Design (TED).
  3. ^ https://www.macfound.org/fellows/993/
  4. ^ a b the Urban Landscape Lab: Directors, Urban Landscape Lab (Columbia University).
  5. ^ Nojan Aminosharei; Allison Davis; Corrie Pikul; Julie Vadnal (June 22, 2011). "The Fixers: 9 for All Mankind". Elle magazine. Retrieved 2011-12-11.
  6. ^ "Kate Orff Named Director of Columbia University's Graduate Urban Design Program". Retrieved 2015-09-23.
  7. ^ "Landscape Architect Kate Orff Takes The Helm Of Columbia's Urban Design Program". Retrieved 2015-09-23.
  8. ^ "Kate Orff to emphasize "climate dynamics" as new Director of Columbia GSAPP's Urban Design Program". Archinect.
  9. ^ United States Artists official website
  10. ^ "Beverly Willis Architecture Foundation Hosts Leadership Awards Gala, Kicks off Built By Women Exhibition". Architectural Record. Retrieved March 8, 2015.
  11. ^ "103RD STREET COMMUNITY GARDEN NAMED BUILT BY WOMEN NYC WINNER". Scape Studio. Archived from the original on April 2, 2015. Retrieved March 8, 2015.