Lily Kwong is the founder of Lily Kwong Studio (LKS) , a New York-based design company focused on connecting people to nature through landscape design, art installations and innovative programming. Lily's passion for plants began as a Project Director for the LVMH Miami Design District, where the landscape is integrated into luxury retail and artworks ranging from Sou Fujimoto’s building facade to a Buckminster Fuller dome. Her experience working in the tropics led her to study sustainable design with horticulturalists from South Florida to the New York Botanical Garden. Drawing inspiration from the Minimalist and Land Art movements, Lily uses plant life as a medium to re-imagine the urban landscape.
Lily works at the nexus of landscape design, fashion and culture. Her unique approach focuses on layering a living ecosystem with innovative programming, and infusing places with cultural and environmental significance. In 2015, Lily spearheaded a project with American Forests’ reforestation program and sustainable brand, Amour Vert, to plant 100,000 trees across North America. In 2016, she was commissioned to develop a landscape installation for The Brooklyn Mirage, an outdoor music venue. She brought over 12,000 tropical plants to industrial Brooklyn to create vertical gardens and streetscapes for the 150,000 square foot development, which hosted some of the most in-demand DJs in the world.
This project led Summit Series to invite Lily to participate in their Artist Residency program, where she created an installation for the influential conference’s ‘Skylodge’ center. In April 2017, Lily’s 5,000 square foot interior garden project opened for the 14th Factory, an arts education non profit. It is the designer's response to the threat of climate change, and provided vital green space for the community in a neglected section of downtown Los Angeles. LKS’ upcoming projects include a 3-acre retreat center in Southampton next to the Parrish Museum and a botanical installation on a quarter mile stretch of the Highline.
Lily is an important voice in the growing sustainable fashion movement and has worked with brands like Maiyet, the Nike Foundation and H&M’s Conscious Collection to make the world a greener, more sustainable place. American Vogue recently recognized Lily as one of the 120 most important fashion influencers and she is frequently featured by other top publications such as Architectural Digest, T Magazine, Glamour and W Magazine. Lily is also a contributor to the esteemed art magazine, Cultured. She recently launched askthemmore.com, a podcast that features thought-provoking interviews with inspiring women.
Lily graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University while working with prominent sociologist Sudhir Venkatesh as a film and multimedia fellow at the Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy.