“Don’t name your business something that people can’t pronounce, they can’t spell, they can’t Google and they can’t tell a friend about.
We picked the most obscure and indecipherable name ever, inspired by a movie called Synecdoche, New York which was all about this layering of scenes and spaces. We adopted that word and its larger meaning as a part for a whole; how a material can stand in for a broader idea.”
“It made a lot of sense in terms of how we approach design and the different layers design takes on for solving problems,” adds co-founder and Director of Design, Adam Smith.
The two started working together while in graduate school in 2009 in an origin story that sounds much more lean start-up than traditional architecture practice. “We got our first hired job just out of undergrad. We actually skipped our graduation because we were fabricating pieces of it and that’s how Synecdoche started,” says Adam.
“They gave us a cheque to buy materials which was made out to Synecdoche because we said that was our business name, but we had no way to cash the cheque because we didn’t have a bank account and the business wasn’t actually established,” laughs Lisa. “So, very quickly we had to go file the paperwork and make the thing legitimate: this thing we were pretending to do.”