MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects is a firm offering architectural and urban design services. The firm was originally founded in 1985 by Brian MacKay-Lyons who formed a partnership with Talbot Sweetapple in 2005.
The office of MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects is a design-oriented firm that thrives in its studio culture. Our office consists of fourteen design staff that includes two partners, one senior associate, and one associate; as well as two support staff.
MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects Limited is a leading proponent of critical regionalist architecture worldwide. This recognition has led to a transition in the practice toward increased public and international commissions, involving increased complexity in both design and project delivery.
The firm has built an international reputation for design excellence confirmed by over 100+ awards, including the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Gold Medal in 2015 and Firm Award in 2014, six Governor General Medals, two American Institute of Architects National Honor Awards or Architecture, thirteen Lieutenant Governor’s Medals of Excellence, eight Canadian Architect Awards, three Architectural Record Houses Awards, and seven North American Wood Design Awards. A fellow of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (FRAIC) , and the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts (RCA) , Brian was named Honorary Fellow of the American Institute of Architects (Hon FAIA) in 2001.
The work of the firm has been recognized in 330+ publications including six monographs: Seven Stories from a Village Architect (1996) ; Brian MacKay-Lyons: Selected Works 1986i 1997 (1998) ; Plain Modern: The Architecture of Brian MacKay-Lyons by Malcolm Quantrill (2005) ; Ghost: Building an Architectural Vision (2008) ; Local Architecture: Building Place, Craft, and Community (2014) ; and the upcoming publication Economy as Ethic: The Work of MacKay-Lyons Sweetapple Architects which will be authored by Historian and Architect, Robert McCarter. In addition to these monographs, the work of the firm has been featured in 100+ exhibitions internationally.
As a full professor of architecture at Dalhousie University, Brian has contributed to architectural education in the region for 25 years. Talbot Sweetapple has been a sessional instructor at Dalhousie for 10 years. Brian and Talbot have held numerous endowed academic chairs and visiting professorships at leading universities including: The Peter Behrens School of Architecture in Düsseldorf, Washington University in St. Louis, and Harvard University, to name a few. The firm’s work has been the subject of over 80 exhibitions in Canada, the United States, and Europe.