Partner James Dodson leaving VA

Amicable split opens for new collaborations

Various Architects AS partner and co-founder James Dodson has decided to leave Various Architects to pursue new collaborations and creative directions. VA was started in 2008 by Elhayawan and Dodson after 13 years as friends and colleagues at Snøhetta where they participated in the design and construction of many of Snøhetta’s best known public and cultural buildings. For 4 years the pair have led  Various Architects to win international recognition for their ambitious, creative and sustainable designs.


“Starting up Various Architects with Ibrahim has been an amazing, intense, and fruitful experience that I don’t regret in the least. We have pushed each other to create a body of work which I am intensely proud of. In 4 short years we have achieved many of the ambitious goals we set for ourselves when leaving Snøhetta, despite the financial crisis. I look forward to watching Various continue to develop under Ibrahim’s leadership. I think it will also be good for us to go back to being just friends instead of friends and business partners. Ibrahim was best man at my wedding, and he and his family will continue to be an important part of my life. ”  – James Dodson

“Four years ago, when we started up a new company, Jim chose the name Various Architects to reflect our idea of creating a collaborative design firm. The past 4 years have been an amazing and intense experience. We had over 22 people from 10 different nationalities working at Various. Jim has an incredible talent of connecting people together. He created an extremely valuable network for Various. It is sad to see him leaving but his vision and ideas will always remain with us. We wish him the best of luck in his future directions. I am confident that our interlinking networks will create other opportunities to collaborate together in the future. Jim has been one of my closest friends since I moved to Norway 15 years ago.” – Ibrahim Elhayawan