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Jimenez Lai is an assistant professor at University of Illinois at Chicago and Leader of Bureau Spectacular. He holds a master of architecture degree from the University of Toronto. Lai has lived and worked in a desert shelter at Taliesin and resided in a shipping container at Atelier Van Lieshout on the piers of Rotterdam.
Before founding Bureau Spectacular, he worked for MOS, AVL, REX, and OMA/Rem Koolhaas in Toronto, Rotterdam, and New York. In the past years, Lai has built numerous installations as well as being exhibited and published around the world.
His first manifesto, Citizens of No Place, was published by Princeton Architectural Press with a grant from the Graham Foundation. Draft II of this book has been archived at the New Museum as a part of the show Younger Than Jesus.
In 2012 Lai was named a winner of the Architectural League Prize for Young Architects.