Sharon Exley makes play an art. Under Sharon's direction, ArchitectureIsFun has become one of the most respected specialty practices focusing on architecture for children of all ages. Elevating learning and play environments to sophisticated design, she has successfully executed award-winning projects that include museums, playgrounds, outdoor learning environments, children's ministries, healthcare facilities, experiential and exploratory environments for children, their caregivers, and their communities.
Sharon understands what makes play work. Directing the interior design process, Sharon envisions and brands meaningful purposeful environments, holistically sensitive to children, clients and project type needs, while infusing them with texture, color, light and an identity of place and purpose. She uniquely melds her roles as educator, designer, author, and parent to bring experience to the educational content, planning, programming, design and implementation of spaces for children of all ages.
It is all about trust and making kids and clients feel like they count. Sharon's leadership, creativity, and educational focus inform the participatory process of design that is the hallmark of ArchitectureIsFun and its success. Sharon has developed the firm's core philosophy of educative design: design is educated through interactions with the child, the client, and the community and in turn, design educates through the articulation of space for interaction, experience, and self-discovery. It is this filter of collaboration and inclusiveness that ultimately creates “places” of participation, play and learning, which are indispensable for everyone's growth.
Peter Exley takes fun seriously. Peter has established an internationally recognized practice of architecture for children, families, and communities, which elevates the standards of design for learning and play environments.
Peter listens to kids, clients, and communities. This multi-disciplinary approach is what distinguishes ArchitectureIsFun and helps create safe, engaging projects that immerse children and families in play and exploration. As the firm’s co-founder with over 25 years of experience, Peter leads the design effort, from initial concept through project realization. As the direct point of contact for project design and development, he assures that projects meet their pragmatic, quantifiable criteria: accessibility, program, budget, and schedule. Listening to the needs of children, clients, and communities, Peter considers criteria of a qualitative nature, the inspirational and developmental. Using all three criteria to inform design sets Peter’s work apart, creating projects in which children are inspired to play and learn.
It is all about looking at the world with child-like wonder and understanding. Peter is an architect, Fellow, professor, artist, author and parent. He uses these forums as a living laboratory vital to the methodology of educative design, sharing passion and practice with clients and communities, students and colleagues. Champion of childhood, Peter creates archetypical learning environments and architecture for children that is recognized for the fun, education, accessibility, play, and family interaction that they provide. Through his practice, Peter nurtures a consciousness of design as a lifelong expectation and pursuit.