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Vladimir Ossipoff

Vladimir Ossipoff American architect

American architect
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro American architect
Was Architect
From Russia United States of America
Type Engineering
Gender male
Birth 25 November 1907, Vladivostok
Death 1 October 1998, Honolulu (aged 90 years)
Vladimir Ossipoff
The details

Vladimir ‘Val’ Ossipoff (1907–1998) was an American architect best known for his works in Hawaii.


Vladimir Ossipoff was born November 25, 1907 in Vladivostok, Russia, but grew up in Tokyo, Japan, where his father was a military attaché of the Russian embassy, and emigrated to the United States in 1923. He moved to Honolulu, Hawaii, after graduating from the University of California, Berkeley in 1931 and said in the early 1960s that he carried on a "War on Ugliness," a struggle to counter what he felt was poor architectural design and unrestricted development of Honolulu. Ossipoff was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1956. He was awarded the first medal of honor of the AIA Hawaii chapter. He was a member of The Pacific Club, for which he designed a new building in 1959.

He died October 1, 1998 in Honolulu.


In 2007, the Honolulu Museum of Art organized the first museum retrospective of his work. "Hawaiian Modern: The Architecture of Vladimir Ossipoff" was on view at the Academy from November 29, 2007, to January 27, 2008. The show was planned to travel next to the German Architecture Museum in Frankfurt, Germany (Summer 2008) and the Yale School of Architecture Gallery in New Haven, Connecticut (Fall 2008).

Ossipoff has been called “the master of Hawaii modern architecture,” “the dean of residential architects in Hawaii,” and “the premier postwar designer of kama'aina-style residences in Honolulu,” perhaps the most famous of which is the Liljestrand House.

An architect has to be a bit of a sociologist, lawyer and psychologist. He has to know human nature.

— Vladimir Ossipoff,
Works by Vladimir Ossipoff
Interior of Aloha Jewish Chapel on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam
Interior of Aloha Jewish Chapel on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam 
View from driveway of Liljestrand House, which is on the National Register of Historic Places
View from driveway of Liljestrand House, on National Register of Historic Places 
Liljestrand House stairway
Liljestrand House stairway 
Liljestrand House - living room facing door
Liljestrand House - living room facing door 
Boettcher Estate
Boettcher Estate 

The Ossipoff Documents Restoration Project

A collection of sixty-six boxes of Vladimirs Ossipoff's drawings and papers was bequeathed to Hamilton Library at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. As of October 2013 there is a fundraising campaign on Indiegogo for the preservation and presentation of this collection of architectural documents.

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