Ole Scheeren (born 6 January 1971) is a German architect, urbanist and principal of Büro Ole Scheeren Group with offices in Beijing, Hong Kong, Berlin and Bangkok and a visiting professor at the University of Hong Kong since January 2010.
Early life and career
Ole Scheeren is the son of the German architect Dieter Scheeren, who was a professor of architecture and civil engineering at the RheinMain University of Applied Sciences in Wiesbaden, Hesse.
Already at the age of 14 he was working at his father's office designing furniture and finished his first architectural project at the age of 21. As a twenty-year-old he traveled with his rucksack through rural China and lived there with the locals spending three months before his studies began. Ole Scheeren studied at the Institute of Technology (KIT) in Karlsruhe, at the École Polytechnique Fédérale (EPFL) in Lausanne and made a thesis at the Architectural Association School of Architecture in London receiving the RIBA Silver Medal in 2000 for his work called "MexT Project" which analysed social, territorial and economical phenomena in relation with space and architecture.
After working in Germany, New York and London, Ole Scheeren began his work at the Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) in Rotterdam in 1995. In 2002 he became Partner and Director of the offices in Beijing and Hong Kong and responsible for the entire Asia business for more than 10 years.
As Partner-in-charge of OMA's largest project to date, he successfully led the realization of the China Central Television Station (CCTV) and the Television Cultural Centre (TVCC) in Beijing. His other projects include MahaNakhon, a 314-meter mixed-use tower in the city of Bangkok owned until 2017 by Pace Development; The Scotts Tower, featuring high-end apartments in Singapore; The Interlace, a 1000-unit residential complex in Singapore; a project for Shenzhen's new city centre; as well as the Taipei Performing Arts Center. He also directed OMA's work for Prada and completed the Prada Epicenters in New York (2001) and Los Angeles (2004). He also led numerous other projects including the Beijing Books Building, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Leeum Cultural Center in Seoul, and a masterplan for Penang Island in Malaysia.
Ole Scheeren is currently working on a series of projects, including Guardian Art Center, the new exhibition space and headquarters for China's oldest art auction house currently under construction in close proximity to the Forbidden City in Beijing; DUO, a contemporary twin-tower mixed-use development comprising residences, offices, Andaz Singapore hotel and retail gallery in Singapore; MahaNakhon, at 314-meter Thailand's tallest tower and housing the Ritz-Carlton Residences; Angkasa Raya, a 268-meter tall landmark building in the center of Kuala Lumpur; and a studio/gallery building for a Beijing-based artist.
In March 2010, Ole Scheeren left OMA and started his own architecture firm named Büro Ole Scheeren Group.
Scheeren has contributed to various arts and culture projects and exhibitions throughout his career, including the International Highrise Award, Milan Triennale, China Design Now in London, Cities on the Move in London and Bangkok, Media City Seoul and the Rotterdam Film Festival. In 2006 he designed two exhibitions for the MOMA in New York and Beijing featuring the CCTV Headquarters project. He regularly lectures at various international institutions and conferences and serves on juries for awards and competitions.
In September 2015 Scheeren held a speech at TED in London with the title "Why great architecture should tell a story?"
Ole Scheeren has been living in Beijing since 2004 and was romantically involved with the Hong Kong actress Maggie Cheung from 2007 to 2011.
- 2015: World Building of the Year 2015 – The Interlace, Singapore
- 2015: Best Mixed-Use Development 2015 – MahaNakhon, Bangkok – Asia Pacific Property Awards
- 2014: Global Urban Habitat Award – The Interlace, Singapore – The Inaugural CTBUH Urban Habitat Award
- 2013: Best Tall Building Worldwide – CCTV Headquarters, Beijing – 12th Annual CTBUH Awards
- 2012: Best Futura Project – DUO, Singapore – MIPIM Asia Awards
- 2010: Green Mark Gold Plus – The Interlace, Singapore – Building and Construction Authority
- 2010: Best Architecture – The Interlace, Singapore – Asia Pacific Property Awards
- 2008: Architecture's Ten Best – CCTV Headquarters, Beijing – The New Yorker
- 2008: Best Building Site – CCTV Headquarters, Beijing – Wallpaper* Magazine
- 2008: Best New Global Design – CCTV Headquarters, Beijing – International Architecture Awards
- 2008: International Highrise Award, Frankfurt (finalist) – TVCC, Beijing
- 2007: The World's Most Ambitious Projects – CCTV Headquarters, Beijing – The Times
- 2000: RIBA Silver Medal (Royal Institute of British Architects)
- 1997: Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes
- 1990: Scheffel Medal (Student's Award in Baden-Württemberg)