Jones Studio Office

Hidden in plain sight, an oasis in the desert


Jones Studio


Tempe, Arizona


6,700 sq ft


Workplace, Resilience

Project Team

After more than three decades in the hallowed modernist office building designed by local architect Al Beadle, the Jones brothers were compelled to craft a studio space to call their own. Not only would the new office provide a home better tailored to the evolving needs of the studio, but also the opportunity to exhibit the sustainable practices and innovative, bioclimatic design we pursue in all our projects. The chosen site was a previously undeveloped infill lot in a quiet, mixed-density residential neighborhood, close to Arizona State University, the vibrant downtown area of Tempe, and a growing transportation network connecting the Valley of the Sun. Our goal was to create an environment to inspire and stimulate our senses, while remaining sensitive to our site and integrated into the community.

jsi office door
8' x 8' center pivot front door
rendered floor plan
Rendered floor plan
jsi office entry
Main entry

The material palette for the studio is simple, durable, and representative of our climate. On the exterior, natural tones of weathering steel and sandblasted concrete masonry at the ground level are complemented by the reflections of the desert sky on the glass and metal panels above. Using an otherwise unassuming material, the exterior concrete block walls create a dynamic veil that wraps the building and frames the entry gardens. The screened gardens provide privacy and views to nature from the work spaces throughout the office, reinforcing a quiet reverence of our desert home.

jsi office intr glass
Workstations adjacent to the garden

On the interior, the changing light of the day is observed on the white walls and ceilings, reflecting the warmth of the red carpeting throughout the work area and the golden brass shimmering in the conference room. The main studio space is designed around the concept of the “family table,” with desks and conference spaces branching from one linear table stretching the length of the office. These spaces are naturally lit with daylight balanced from the full-height ground level glazing along the north garden and the southern clerestory where the sun reflects off the mezzanine and floods the ceiling with natural light. Punctuations of colored light pique intrigue throughout the office, from the dichroic skylight that changes hue with the arc of the sun to the tinted windows glowing through apertures in the masonry.

jsi office desks
The environment and desk arrangement fosters collaboration and connection to one another
jsi office colored masonry
Colored light peaks through the masonry openings on the south façade
jsi office skylight
Color is applied not through paint but through light and reflection

The concrete block screen walls elevate a common material to a revelation. Beginning at the east end of the site, the wall starts with standard masonry construction. As the wall extends west, the blocks begin to incrementally separate and rotate, opening the wall to more light and the view beyond. With each step, the openings expand further until each block becomes an element within the unfolding composition. On the opposite end of the wall, wrapping the west face of the conference room and the southern exposure of the building, the blocks aggregate into a solid wall again.

jsi office conf garden
Sunken conference room off reception area
jsi office conf room
Sunken conference room overlooks garden
jsi office courtyard
Garden off main entry and conference room
CMU Screen Wall
Main entry gate and masonry screen wall
Jones Studio Parking Lot
Decomposed granite permeable car park

As a symbol of our values, the studio is imbued with sustainable, resilient design strategies. Natural daylighting is abundant throughout the year and sliding doors integrated into the north glazing provide natural ventilation in more temperate seasons. Water harvesting is blended into the experience of the studio entries, where rainwater collected on the roof and entry canopies cascades through the weathered steel downspouts and into the below-grade greywater tank and sustains the surrounding xeriscaped gardens and parking area.

View from Wilson Street
View from Wilson Street
Water Collection Diagram
Water is harvested from the roof to an underground storage tank and is then used to irrigate the desert landscape
Conceptual Hand Drawn Rendering by Eddie Jones
Hard-drawn rendering by Eddie
Jones Studio Office
The family table runs the length of the office and includes meeting space and desks that branch off
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