founder. artist. designer.

Hakan has been a part of the Modern Out West team since its inception, starting by planning out and renovating The Bliss Foundation for the Arts, helping to turn it into the studio space we work in today. He has an educational background in architecture, as well as a deep passion for art, graphic design, fashion, and film and digital photography. These various interests inspire him to merge yesterday's analog technology with today's digital world, and gives him a unique understanding of how a multi-disciplinary design process could shape the outcome of a project.

Starting out his career in art documentation and historic preservation, Hakan has grown to foster a meticulous work ethic, ensuring nothing will be missed. With his personal appreciation of traditional forms of making, he seeks to raise the relevance of commonplace items through dedicated observance of the passage of time and careful attention to nuances in the handmade.

Hakan studied architecture at the University of Utah, earning his bachelor’s degree before moving to Istanbul, Turkey to become reacquainted with the city he grew up in and be closer to the family living there. He finds Istanbul to be a constant source of inspiration for both his work as well as his artistic hobbies, and he’s constantly photographing his surroundings and taking notes on the city’s grand architecture.

In his free time, Hakan has no shortage of hobbies— photography, fashion theory, movies, cooking, and travel are his present obsessions, but he’s constantly leaving himself open to letting in new disciplines and experiences. He brings his creative mind to everything he does, and is effortless in his pursuit of a complete understanding of the hobbies he takes on.

Hakan’s design ethos is focused on reducing excess. He believes that simplicity is a form of sophistication, and that by designing modest, clean buildings architects can avoid contributing to the cycle of waste that so negatively affects our world. He believes that architects who are driven by a love for people and beautiful spaces will always add more to the built landscape than those who are driven by power or fame.

Certifications / Memberships

  • American Institute of Architects
  • European Chapter, American Institute of Architects
  • United States Green Building Council
  • National Certification Architectural Registration Board

  • Education

  • 2021 University of Utah, Bachelors of Science in Architecture, Minor in Business

  • Professional Experience

  • 2019 Modern Out West, Architectural and Graphics Designer
  • 2019 Bliss Foundation for the Arts
  • 2017 Protein Foundry

  • Publications and Features

  • 2024 @toffuco, Instagram
  • 2023 Unbuilt Arch Magazine, website and Instagram
  • 2023 @models_architecture, Instagram
  • 2022 @uofuarchplan, Instagram, ”P.A.T. Center Analysis”
  • 2022 @uofu_arch, Instagram, ”P.A.T. Center Analysis”
  • 2021 @uofu_art, Instagram, “False Idols”

  • Exhibitions

  • 2022 Pine, Musical Performance

  • Service Work

  • 2023 Architecture, Culture, Spirituality Forum, Organizing Team
  • 2020 BLM Protest Fund, Photography Zine Fundraiser
  • 2018 + 2020, VOA Youth Center, Coat Drive

  • Hobbies / Interests

  • Street photography, film + digital
  • Music composition
  • Fashion theory
  • Chess
  • Bartending
  • Using Format