Lola Sheppard’s research exists at the intersection of architecture, landscape, and urbanism. It privileges architecture as a mutable territory that is formed out of and responsive to its history and environment. The work posits that the role of the architect is not simply problem solver or designer, but cultural, environmental and spatial detective, bringing to light the forces at work within a site-specific climate and geography, and able to look for synergies between issues and opportunities. Much of her recent work and teaching has focused on the role of architecture, infrastructure and the public realm in the unique and challenging context of Arctic Canada.
Lola founded Lateral Office in 2003 in partnership with Mason White. Prior to this, she worked in architecture firms in Rotterdam, Paris, and London (UK). Lola is also a Director of InfraNet Lab, a non-profit research collective, founded in 2008, which probes the spatial by-products of contemporary resource logistics. Lola is co-editor of the journal Bracket: Architecture, Environment, Digital Culture.
Lola was awarded the RAIC Young Architects Award in 2012, and Lateral Office was awarded the Emerging Voices from the Architecture League of New York in 2011 and the 2010 Professional Prix de Rome from the Canada Council for the Arts. She has held grants from the Canada Council and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.
Lola is co-author of Pamphlet Architecture #30 titled COUPLING: Strategies for Infrastructural Opportunism, published by Princeton Architectural Press (2011) co-editor of the second issue of Bracket titled [Goes Soft], published by Actar (2012) and Bracket [at Extremes] to be published by Actar in 2013. Lateral’s work has been published in Praxis, GAM, Landscape Architecture China (2010), Young Architects: Situating (Princeton Architectural Press, 2006), C3 and l’Arca. Lola’s writing has been published in Canadian Architect, Alphabet City: Water (MIT Press, 2009), and 306090. Lola has lectured and exhibited work in Canada, the US, Iceland, and England. She has been an invited critic at the Universities of Pennsylvania, British Columbia, Virginia, Toronto, Michigan, Buffalo, Yale, McGill, Laval, and the Architectural Association, among others.
Sheppard,L., White M. “Notes on the Activist Tradition in Architecture” in Onus, Perspecta 53: The Yale Architecture Journal. MIT Press, 2020.
White, M., Sheppard, L., "States of Disassembly: Electronics, Toxicity, and Territory” in Imminent Commons: The Expanded City. Seoul Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism, ed. by Alejandro Zaero-Polo and Jeffrey S Anderson. (Barcelona: Actar, 2017) 406-414 2016
Sheppard, L. “Detective Work.” Beyond Patronage. Joyce Hwang, Martha Bohm, eds. (Barcelona: Actar, 2016)
Przybylski, M., Sheppard, L. eds. Bracket 3: At Extremes. (Barcelona: Actar, 2017).
"Sometimes a Building is Not Enough": Lola Sheppard on Architecture as a Cultural Act” in Archdaily.
Jane Margolies, "Eyes Northward" in Landscape Architecture Magazine. March 2015: 120-133 (interview with Lola Sheppard)
Office: ARC 2012