Sonia Sobrino Ralston is a designer and researcher.

Sonia Sobrino Ralston is a designer and researcher.

Sonia Sobrino Ralston is a designer and researcher, and currently is the Research and Teaching Fellow in Art + Design at the Northeastern College of Media, Art and Design. She is interested in the intersections between landscape, architecture, and the history of technology. Her work focuses on the ways that plants and information systems collide, and the broader implications this has on social, political, and labor structures. Her current design and writing projects center on the potential of plants to be understood as sensors, the organization and datafication of botanical information in living collections, and the biopolitical history of bioindicators.

Sonia teaches interdisciplinary design studios and courses at Northeastern University and the University of Pennsylvania. She has led a workshop at the Harvard Graduate School of Design on interspecies design, and gives workshops on plant representation methods. She has been invited to lecture on her work in courses and conferences at the Cooper Union, Harvard University, Princeton University, the University of Connecticut, among others.

Sonia recently graduated with distinction from the Harvard Graduate School of Design with a Master of Landscape Architecture where she was awarded the Landscape Architecture Thesis Prize, the Digital Design Prize, and the Norman T. Newton Prize. She also holds a Master of Architecture from Princeton University where she received a certificate in Media + Modernity and the Suzanne Kolarik Underwood Prize, as well as an undergraduate degree from the University of Toronto in architecture, urban studies, and geography.

Sonia also collaborates with Office Party, a design collective that explores ephemeral spaces as the origin of social and material networks that have urban, political and environmental effects, and edits Party Planner, an annual journal and personal calendar that deals with alternative forms of space-making. In 2024, Office Party was selected as one of six practices for the Architectural League Prize under the theme “dirty.”

She served as Assistant Curator for the 2022 Tallinn Architecture Biennale on the theme “Edible: Or, the Architecture of Metabolism.” More recently, she acted as the conference associate for the Harvard Department of Landscape Architecture’s Setting the Course symposium on landscape studio pedagogy, where she helped to chair a session and design the conference installation. She also supported work at the metaLAB at Harvard, including a recent science communication project on radiowaves in the built environment.  While a student at Princeton, Sonia was on the editorial team of Pidgin, where she edited five issues of the journal and organized its archive. Beyond this, Sonia has worked as an editor, data visualizer, and designer—from architecture, exhibitions, to graphics—at institutions and organizations focused on spatial concerns.  

Her writing has been published in the Avery Review, CARTHA Magazine, as well as a co-authored chapter in Urban Transformations. Her design work from installation to video has been exhibited in New York, Tallinn, Cambridge, and Sao Paulo.

Sonia also designed this website, which uses the Sunrise Sunset API. It is currently daytime nighttime in Boston. She is inspired by interactive media that commune with environmental systems.

Last updated: May 2024

The background changes according to the diurnal cycles of Boston, MA.