PARTISANS is a movement. We are architects, thinkers, and cultural enthusiasts devoted to a cause: smart, beautiful, and provocative design.
We tell stories. But not just any stories. We build architectural narratives that elicit counternarratives—stories that spring to life through spontaneous mutations and unexpected cracks. Beauty emerges when design misbehaves.
We are idealistic enough to believe in the political and poetical power of architecture. We also know that the best work emerges when you join forces with the best makers, doers, and clients—in other words, fellow partisans.
We listen. We transmute. We shoot for the sublime.
PARTISANS is participatory. Our intentions are earnest, our enthusiasm, unblinking.
Don’t hire us. Join us.
POOYA BAKTASH, B.Arch, M.Arch (Co-Founder)
Pooya studied architecture at the University of Azad in Tehran, Iran, where he also worked at renowned architecture firm EBA, recipient of the Aga Khan Award. In 2007, he came to Canada to pursue a Master’s degree at the University of Waterloo School of Architecture. Pooya has a record of achievement on major civic projects. He co-founded PARTISANS in 2012.
JONATHAN FRIEDMAN, OAA, MRAIC, AIA Intl. Assoc., LEED GA, M.Arch, BES (Partner)
Jonathan studied architecture at the University of Waterloo School of Architecture where he received numerous awards, including the prestigious Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Gold Medal for his graduate work. Jonathan has worked in the offices of numerous architects, such as HOK, where he worked as a project architect on major civic buildings. He is a licensed architect in Ontario and member of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.
ALEX JOSEPHSON, B.A.S., M.Arch (Co-Founder)
Alex studied art and architecture at the University of Waterloo School of Architecture and the University of Rome, where he also worked in the offices of Massimiliano Fuksas. In 2011, Alex left the Architecture Association School (AA) in London, England, to start PARTISANS. The recipient of numerous awards, he is the only Canadian to have ever received the New York Prize Fellowship from the Van Alen Institute. Alex also lectures at the University of Toronto’s Daniels Faculty of Architecture.
NICOLA SPUNT, PhD (Director of Content & Culture)
Nicola is a producer, writer and award-winning literary scholar. After completing a PhD in English, she founded After School, a talk series that reimagines learning and activates big-idea conversations. Nicola produces film, television, and music videos, and has also published in the Oxford Literary Review, the Henry James Review, and Hazlitt. Currently, she is producing and moderating a new speaker series for Soho House called Table Talks. Nicola oversees content development, ideation, and cultural strategies for PARTISANS.
MICHAEL BOOTSMA, M.Arch, Designer, Project Manager
NATHAN BISHOP, M.Arch, Designer, Project Manager
IVAN VASYLIV, B.ArchSc, Designer, Candidate MBA MTI (2016)
BETTY VUONG, B.ArchSc, Designer
ARIEL COOKE, B.ArchSc, Designer
MARK MELNICHUK, B.ArchSc, Designer
ADAM ZABUNYAN, Graphic Designer & Illustrator
HANS IBELINGS, Architectural Critic and Historian
MARC LAFLEUR, Ethnographer
SANAM SAMANIAN, Director of Media Relations
ANDREW FRANCIS, VP International Business Development