Jonathan Bunge Husband-and-wife architectural duo to design presidential library

The Obama Foundation has recently announced the architects chosen to design President Barack Obama’s presidential library in Chicago. Among the 144 submissions, the foundation has selected New York-based architects Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, together with the Interactive Design Architects (IDEA). The team was chosen from seven other finalists who are also renowned in the field of architecture and design.

Williams and Tsien are the husband-and-wife team known for their work in creating cultural and academic institutions such as the Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago and the ice-skating rink in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, to name a few. Chicago-based firm IDEA, on the other hand, designed the Art Institute of Chicago’s Modern Wing and some other buildings in President Obama’s hometown.

The personal chemistry between the architects and the first couple was an important factor in the selection, according to Martin Nesbitt, Obama Foundation president and a close friend of President Obama. Williams and Tsien were especially considered because of their previous work on civic projects and their tremendous concern for Chicago’s history and architecture which they highlighted in their proposal.

Williams and Tsien expressed enthusiasm in the project and considers it as an honor and responsibility to create a place which will replicate the optimism and integrity of President Obama and the First Lady. The Obama Presidential Center, which will house the Obama library as well as a museum dedicated to the Obam presidency, is expected to be finished by 2023. The center aims to promote President Obama’s ideology of peace and equality as it will serve as a venue for ordinary people to gather, discuss ideas, and make a change.

Hello, everyone! I’m Jonathan Bunge from Chicago, Illinois. For more interesting facts, insights, and news about the field of architecture, follow me on Twitter.

Living room pieces that will always be in style

As an architect and interior designer, I have to be in sync with the latest trends in home design. There may be many rooms in the house, but I realized that there are clients who only care about how their living room looks. I understand that this part of the house is where visitors are usually welcomed, and the design needs to be impeccable. To keep my clients from spending too much on furniture, here are items that will remain stylish even in the years to come:

1. Leather armchair

It was classy piece back in the ‘70s. Until now having leather armchair (especially in brown tones) is still cool. Even if you pair it with a bold colored couch, it will still draw attention from those who want to literally sit back and relax. Here’s a tip: Keep the leather shiny and dust-free always. Re-upholster when necessary.

2. Ottoman

Choose one in a neutral color to make it blend with whatever colors you’ll choose for your walls. The great thing about this piece is that it can be placed just anywhere in the living room. Some people use it as a footstool, others like a chair, and some like it as a coffee table. Do whatever you want with it.

3. Persian rug

There’s no substitute for a good Persian rug. The styles may come and go, but these rugs will always be a must-have. Cleaning could be tricky especially with pets but for me, it’s better than having a faux fur or a zebra-print rug.

You don’t need to spend much if you want the living room to look its perfect. Just invest in the right pieces and you’re all set. Good luck.

I’m Jonathan Bunge from Chicago, Illinois. I believe that design is life, and my job as an architect and interior designer proves my penchant for the craft. Let’s keep in touch on Twitter.

Three simple tips to making any home kid-friendly

One question all interior designers hear all the time is “how do I make my home kid-friendly?” The truth is, there are hundreds of ways each parent can employ; design variations depending on the age of the kid and his or her specific temperament. There are, however, three general rules that must be followed. These are listed below.

Remember that children are curious: Regardless of age, children will touch things. Thus, parents should be very wary of sharp corners and objects lying around the house. For parents of younger children, safety pads can be placed around sharp corners in chairs and tables. These can be taken out as the child gets older and is better able to follow directions. Similarly though, dangerous items such as knives and potentially delicate items should be taken away from a child’s reach. Things such as porcelain dolls should not be placed on unstable perches. These could potentially fall down and harm the child.

Practice proper clean-up: A large part of child accidents is caused by strangulation and suffocation. These can be effectively prevented by practicing proper clean-up after playtime. Stuffed toys, cushions, and any material that may be potentially swallowed, bitten, or chewed upon should be immediately stowed away.

Have regular electrical check-ups: Parents should always practice electrical safety. It is recommended that an annual check-up be maintained. Electricians should look for dislodged outlets and can be asked to install safety switches to prevent electrocution.

Parents should visit their nearest interior designer for more specific design tips.

I am Jon Bunge, a Chicago, Illinois-based part-time interior designer. I love helping people with my craft and post some design tips and recommendation on this Twitter account.


How can VR and AR change architecture?

How can VR and AR change architecture?

Architects have long relied on heavy paper rolls and field visits to show clients an update on the latest developments in a project. But in the age we live today, tools like smartphones, augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR) platforms are making things easier for architects and clients as well. These new technologies are promising for the industry.

VR and AR for architecture do not exist to replace manual or digital sketching. For now, these new advancements are used to supplement what is done digitally or on paper. AR helps in adding computer-generated objects and textures and turning them into real-world environments. VR also immerses clients and industry workers in a digital simulation of a certain project.

New to augmented and virtual reality? Here are some AR and VR apps available for download that are useful for interior designers, architects, and engineers.


Visidraft is an AR app that lets teams view building elements in a 3D CAD model. It can be used with AutoCAD, 3DS Max, Revit, SketchUp, ArchiCAD, and Nemetschek Vectorworks. Visidraft shows users how the construction will look like on its early and final stages.


This Android and iOS app can work with different 3D software programs. SmartReality helps users turn 2D plans into realistic and interactive 3D models on tablets, or through VR headsets and smart glasses. After filing models with JBKnowledge, the plans are converted for app use. SmartReality scans paper plans with a camera and syncs it with a 3D model. Team members and clients can have a walk-through with the plan and a virtual model. Users with VR headsets like the Oculus Rift can operate with gesture-driven commands, too.


Augment lets users translate 2D plans into interactive 3D BIM models. It is designed for smartphone use, and can work with different sketching software including Revit, SolidWorks, and 3DS Max. After uploading the models into the Augment platform, users can navigate the project via the app.

Hi, I’m Jonathan Bunge, an architect from Chicago, Illinois. Learn more about architecture trends when you visit this page.

Jonathan Bunge’s Blog

Here Jonathan would like to make use of his blog space as an informative source for the latest news, trends, projects, and products related to architecture, for the convenience of his fellow architects and other architectural professionals.

While the page is still under construction, visitors can expect high quality and relevant content to be posted soon. From articles and interviews to features and videos, this blog page will serve as an engine for discussion among architects in the global scene.

On a mission to bring grand visions to life, Jonathan would like to gather a community of like-minded individuals who continually push the boundaries of traditional architecture. With enough community activity and support, Jonathan hopes his blog page will eventually become a part of his readers’ daily online activities.


As a renowned architect of avant-garde structures, Jonathan would like to share his knowledge and experience for the benefit of others’ architectural practice. Having been in the industry for more than three decades now, he has gained enough professional insights on the ever-changing landscape and how to elevate the purpose architecture holds.

Some topics about architecture that visitors can hope to see in the future are:

  • Engineering
  • Materials Science
  • Modeling and Systems Design
  • Technology
  • Urban Design
  • Master Planning
  • Site Development
  • Space Planning
  • Sustainability Design

Interior Design

Jonathan Bunge and his wife, Melanie, believe that interior design is at the heart of architecture. Beyond the façade of beautiful buildings is the important responsibility of making them functional.

Some topics about interior design that visitors can hope to read about soon are:

  • Remodeling
  • Design Styles
  • Color Choices
  • Window Treatments
  • Lighting
  • Shapes
  • Small and Large Spaces

Interior design has become more than just a hobby for Jonathan. As his second love, there’s nothing more that would please him than becoming part of the conversation! With that said, Jonathan is excited to hear and learn from both interior design students and experts the world over.

Got something in mind? Feel free to let Jonathan know about it! You can send in your questions, comments, and suggested blog topics. You may also send in pictures of your projects, should you wish to share them. Since the content that will be posted here is all about you, you can let Jonathan know how he can serve your reading interests better.

To learn more about how to contact Jonathan, kindly visit this page again for updates.