Marziah Zad is continuously cultivating an architectural design approach that is positioned at the intersection of investigative, computational design and a celebration of existing narratives related to place and identity. Marziah developed professional experience in Lebanon, Spain, Iran, and West Coast USA before cofounding Ashrafi & Zad Design in 2019. The practice is founded on aspirations rooted in experimental design and construction innovation, with projects ranging from the intimate scale to the territorial. The firm has been awarded multiple distinctions for designed and completed projects.
Marziah has architecture instructional experience at the University of Oregon and San Jose State University in California, USA. As an instructor in practice, much of her teaching is based in research, and her design courses focus on the link between experimental digital design techniques and social empowerment issues. She has also collaborated on various research initiatives, including an extensive Global Justice Project focused on lightweight structures for adaptive refugee housing. This research was funded by a grant from the Savage Endowment for International Relations and Peace.
Through defining geometry as a language of expression that communicates with identity, Marziah takes advantage of her technical experience and personal background to explore how generative design systems can benefit communities. She is committed to finding design solutions that are at once deeply rooted in locality while acknowledging a universal identity in a globalized world.