Eighty years ago, Louis Skidmore and Nathaniel A. Owings opened a small office in Chicago to house their new architectural practice. Later joined by John O. Merrill, the three formed SOM—a collective that has spanned generations of architects, interior designers, engineers, and planners, and resulted in more than 10,000 projects in over 50 countries.
To mark this anniversary, we invite you to participate in a photo contest that captures SOM's work around the world. Throughout our firm's history, photography has been central to how the public has experienced architecture. From Ezra Stoller's large-format photos in Architectural Record to iPhone snapshots on Instagram, the story of a building or a public space is often first told to us through someone else's lens.
This summer, in SOM's 80th year, we invite you to open your camera app and lend your photographic eye to the #SOM80 Instagram photo contest. It's easy to enter: Take an original photo of an SOM project and post it to Instagram with #SOM80 in the caption. You'll have a chance to be featured on SOM's Instagram feed or to win the contest prize of two great books on architecture: SOM Thinkers: The Future of the Skyscraper and One World Trade Center: Biography of the Building.
From Mauna Kea Beach Hotel in Hawaii to Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai, we're eager to see what you'll capture. For inspiration, search our Projects page to find a selection of buildings and spaces near you.
The #SOM80 photo contest begins on July 11th, 2016, and ends on August 31st, 2016, at 11:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time. Entries will be reviewed by a jury comprised of photographers and SOM staff. One winner will be announced on or around September 9th, 2016. Full contest rules are available here.
About Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP (SOM) is one of the leading architecture, interior design, engineering, and urban planning firms in the world, with an 80-year reputation for design excellence and a portfolio that includes some of the most important architectural accomplishments of the 20th and 21st centuries. Since its inception, SOM has been a leader in the research and development of specialized technologies, new processes and innovative ideas, many of which have had a palpable and lasting impact on the design profession and the physical environment. The firm’s longstanding leadership in design and building technology has been honored with more than 1,700 awards for quality, innovation, and management. The American Institute of Architects has recognized SOM twice with its highest honor, the Architecture Firm Award—in 1962 and again in 1996. The firm maintains offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., London, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Mumbai, and Abu Dhabi.