Dream The Combine

Dream The Combine | Clearing, Franconia Sculpture Park, Shafer, MN, 2017. Image credit: Caylon Hackwith

The Architectural League’s annual Emerging Voices program spotlights North American architects, landscape architects, and urban designers who have significant bodies of realized work and the potential to influence their field.

Tom Carruthers and Jennifer Newsom of Dream The Combine won a 2023 award.

Tom Carruthers and Jennifer Newsom founded Dream The Combine in Minneapolis in 2013. Working at the intersection of art and architecture, the practice designs site-specific installations in public space. Carruthers’ and Newsom’s large-scale installations use industrial materials like steel, glass, and construction textiles to form, in their words, “perceptual frameworks for vision and movement that complicate the relationship between body, space, and image.” Located in galleries, downtown streets, and public parks, these installations aim to spur chance encounters and embrace shifting interpretations.  

Projects include: 

  • Hide & Seek, a kinetic installation for MoMA PS1’s courtyard comprised of steel frames, net hammocks, mirrors, and misters
  • Columbus Columbia Colombo Colón, a field of 58 metal poles with aluminized mylar text installed in Columbus, Indiana’s Mill Race Park
  • Lure, an installation for a Seattle gallery made from steel and blue debris net.

Dream The Combine’s work has been published and exhibited widely. The practice won the American Academy in Rome’s 2022–23 Rome Prize in Architecture, the 2022 United States Artists Fellowship in Architecture and Design, and The Museum of Modern Art’s 2018 Young Architects Program, among other awards and fellowships. 

Tom Carruthers holds a bachelor’s in visual art from Brown University and an MArch from the Yale School of Architecture. He is an assistant professor at Cornell University’s College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP). 

Jennifer Newsom received her bachelor’s in architecture and MArch from Yale University. She is an assistant professor at Cornell AAP.