Profile: Professor on a mission to marry traditional design with 21st-century 'light and nature'

KENGO Kuma & Associates was founded in 1990 in Japan and has offices in Paris. The firm is involved in a wide range of work, from furniture and product design, to architecture and urban-scale planning.

Kengo Kuma is a professor at the Graduate School of Architecture at Tokyo University and has won many awards, including the prestigious Architectural Institute of Japan Award in 1997. His stated goal is to recover the design of traditional buildings and to reinterpret that for the 21st century, utilising the inspiration of light and nature.

Recent work includes the Art Museum in Nagasaki, Japan, built in 2005, and blueprints for the Contemporary Arts Centre in Marseille, France, which is under construction.

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Mr Kuma's V&A project team includes cre8architecture (Scotland), ARUP (UK), Optimised Environments Ltd (Scotland) and CBA (Scotland). He said: "It is a great honour to hear the news, and my team and I are grateful for this significant opportunity. I am thrilled to be able to work with those at V&A at Dundee in order to give shape to their vision, to contribute meaningfully to the cultural richness of the city.

"It will be an exciting endeavour that will combine the tradition and heritage of the Victoria and Albert Museum and our new ideas. Furthermore, we are enthusiastic about the amazing site, the city and environment - it is our intention to find a balanced approach to nature and the city life of Dundee.

"We wish to bring our best efforts forward with vigour and passion."