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Kay Bea Jones

  • Professor, Architecture Section
236 Knowlton Hall

Kay Bea Jones is a professor of architecture at the Knowlton School. She came to Ohio State after working in Florence and Rome, Italy. Jones graduated magna cum laude and phi beta kappa from St. Olaf College with a B.A. in fine arts and mathematics. She also earned a certificate in urban and regional planning from the University of Oslo, Norway. Jones received her Master of Architecture degree from Yale University and was honored with the Eero Saarinen Memorial Award, the Wendy Elizabeth Blanning Award, and an American Association of University Women Fellowship.  She received the Boyer Award for Teaching Excellence in 2001 in recognition of the School’s Italy Abroad Program.

Jones’ research interests include modern and contemporary Italian architecture. She recently published her manuscript on the architecture of Franco Albini, Suspending Modernity (Ashgate Press) which has been nominated for the Society of Architectural Historians Alice Davis Hitchcock Book Award. Jones has applied her studies to American co-housing, the building of the Buckeye Village Community Center at Ohio State, on which Jones was research architect. Her design was recognized nationally with an Environmental Design Research Awards: Places Design Award and an Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture Collaborative Practice Award. The project was recognized locally with AIA design awards in Ohio and Columbus. 

Jones also studies in urban agriculture and the impacts of change in the American food system on urban revitalization. She is joint author of a proposal that received a HUD Community Challenge Grant (2011-2013). Jones assembled a design team at Knowlton to produce the recent schematic design for Columbus’ Weinland Park Food District.

Jones has served as national secretary of the ACSA and participated on five NAAB accreditation teams. At Ohio State, she has led the design section of the International Poverty Solutions Collaborative and helped establish The Women’s Place.

During her Faculty Professional Leave, she will be studying the modern architecture of the Olivetti Company in Ivrea, Italy. Jones was awarded a Bogliasco Residential Fellowship for autumn 2015 and will pursue her scholarship among an international cohort of fellows in film, dance, creative writing and architecture.

Recent Work

Suspending Modernity: The Architecture of Franco Albini

Professor Kay Bea Jones, renowned scholar of the architecture and design of modern Italy, published her book about the international impact of the work of Milanese architect Franco Albini in 2014 (Ashgate Publishing). She has lectured widely on Albini’s life and career, including at Yale University, MAXXI in Rome, Montreal, ASCA Conferences, and the Columbus Museum of Art. Her work on modern Italian design themes continues with a co-edited book in process on the “Afterlife of Fascism” and the importance of Adriano Olivetti influence on early regional planning and the mid-century architecture of his company town in Ivrea, Italy.