Benjamin Olsen is a designer working across architectural design, construction methodology, urban research, public policy, and stage design. His residential work focuses on designing the next generation of attainable housing.
With Ryan Hughes he co-founded Office Hughes Olsen, a broadminded design practice that focuses on architectural projects large and small. From research-driven inquiries to realized designs OHO’s work strives for simplicity, economy, and beauty. We approach both conceptualization and construction with rigor and curiosity. Issues of local and global significance, investigated through architectural analysis, inform our practices and partnerships. Our Two-Level Infill House won AIA-MN’s 2022 Affordable Housing Design Award and is a model for densifying existing neighborhoods in progressive zoning districts across the state.
He is also a partner and Design Manager at Lagom Modular, a Duluth-based general contracting company that builds attainable single family infill developments in Greater Minnesota. Lagom Modular delivers compact modern homes via hybrid offsite-onsite prefabrication methods including panelization, kit-building, and site-built construction.
Benjamin holds a Bachelor of Arts from St. Olaf College and a Master of Architecture from Yale School of Architecture. He teaches at the University of Minnesota College of Design and St. Olaf College. In 2020 he was an artist-in-residence at Everwood Farmstead. He freelances as a stage designer with theater and opera companies around the country.
"Ben Olsen...is an inventive designer who understands architecture and can bring theatricality to the work"
--Peter Rothstein, artistic director of Theater Latte Da