Discipline: Architecture

Jonsara Ruth

Discipline: Architecture
Region: Brooklyn, NY
MacDowell Fellowships: 2003

Jonsara Ruth is a designer, artist, and founder of Salty Labs. The collaborative design studio was created to experiment with works at a variety of scales - interiors, installations, events, furniture, objects, and manufacturing. Every project employs strategies that care for human and environmental health, with determination to create as little waste as possible while making new objects and environments. Elevating everyday human experience is her underlying pursuit. Material curiosities drive her research.

Jonsara has led creative and production teams to design and mass-produce furniture and with Q Collection, she and the team produced the healthiest children’s furniture available in America. There she enlisted American manufacturers to combine historical quality craftsmanship with materials and manufacturing processes that eliminate risks to human health and the environment. She learned the ins and outs of global manufacturing in her role as lead designer for Martha Stewart Signature Furniture produced with Bernhardt Furniture Company. Her work is featured in publications internationally, has received multiple awards, is exhibited in galleries and museums, and installed in public and private interiors.

Jonsara is co-founder and Design Director of Healthy Materials Lab at Parsons School of Design where she is Associate Professor and Founding Director of the MFA Interior Design program. In her leadership, teaching, and design work she advocates for an understanding of the material world as the fundamental basis of all design and human experience.

She regularly contributes as a lecturer, reviewer, writer, and advisor to interior design institutions and publications. Jonsara is a fellow at the MacDowell Colony, holds a Masters of Architecture from Cranbrook Academy of Art, and a BFA in Industrial Design from Rhode Island School of Design.

While at MacDowell, Jonsara, in conjunction with Lorella Di Cinto, worked on compiling a collection of memoirs and images from their experience working in a vacant house in Detroit. Their collaborative work was exhibited at the Detroit institute of arts in 2001, and at the Susanne Hilberry Gallery in 2000.



Jonsara Ruth worked in the Heyward studio.

The Lodge Annex, a wing on the west side of the men’s dormitory (The Lodge), was completed in 1926. Initially intended as an apartment for a caretaker, the space was soon repurposed as a live-in studio for writers. In recognition of a major endowment gift from the DuBose and Dorothy Heyward Foundation, Lodge Annex was…

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