Maria Ogrydziak, founder of Maria Ogrydziak Architecture, is known nationally for her valley-inspired built works and her design and policy leadership. Her bold custom homes, retail, and worship spaces build on 30 years in the laboratory of the California landscape. She draws from the culture of identity, the character of materials, green technologies, and the distinct characteristics of the region to create architecture to transform and uplift the everyday experience. Her buildings share common threads of inspired geometries, light filled interiors, and strong connections to the land.
Ogrydziak studied architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, becoming its first female student body president. She was awarded the Compton School Prize and Grunsfeld Architecture Prize in 1970.
She is a past president of California’s AIA Central Valley Chapter, where she founded and chaired the Sacramento Region Architectural Festival. She was a member of the AIA California Council’s Board of Directors and Urban Design Committee and a juror for the AIA California Council and AIA Central Valley Design Awards. As a thought leader at the intersection of regional architecture and policy she was a member of the Long Range Planning and Public Policy Committee for the city of Sacramento, a design strategist for Zoning and Historical Design Guidelines, and project lead for the City Core Planning Study for the city of Davis. Currently she is the AIA Central Valley Chapter’s representative to the national Custom Residential Architects Network.
Awards / Publications
Her innovative designs have won national recognition. Kayak House, a custom concrete home on the American River, was awarded an AIA Central Valley Chapter Citation Award, the Concrete Masonry Honor Award, and a Metal Architecture Award. The bold remodel of the Davis Food Co-op won AIA San Francisco Best of the Bay and AIA California Council Honor Awards. And Flow House, a custom home overlooking the Central Valley, was awarded an AIA Central Valley Citation. She was named a Premier Designer in the Sacramento region by Comstock Magazine and won Decorating & Remodeling’s National Award for Best Bath & Bedroom. Her works have appeared in magazines and blogs worldwide including, Sunset, World Architecture News, Time, and Metropolis. She is also a featured architect in the book, Dream homes of Northern California and the upcoming book, Signature Homes, a showcase of the best architects in America.
Since founding her firm in 1985, Maria Ogrydziak has designed over 400 built projects in California. Prime examples of her valley-inspired architecture style can be found in custom homes such as the downtown-situated Edge Loft artist studio; the Kayak House on the American River; the Flow House in the hills of Solano; and the Flight House surrounded by country in Yolo County. Her retail projects include the multi-award winning Davis Food Co-Op and Tower Records store, the Avid Reader family of independent bookstores, Newsbeat, Café Roma, and Mishka’s Café. Her approach to identity and inspirational spaces has also led to numerous spiritual projects: the Filigree Mosque, a blending of the modern and traditional; the critically acclaimed Ramp Church in the Sacramento region, and the Sky Church. She is currently working on Glass House, a 15,000 square foot luxury, rural homestead with innovative green technologies and bespoke details.
In addition to her practice, Maria has taught architecture at MIT, Stanford, and UC Davis, helping to develop key design courses. She is also a painter and sculptor, and has exhibited at the Oakland Museum. Born in Stockholm to Estonian parents, and raised in Canada and Taiwan, Maria holds both US and Estonian citizenship.