Matthew McNicholas


“Belief in the significance of architecture is premised on the notion that we are, for better or worse, different people in different places- and on the conviction that it is architecture’s task to render vivid to us who we might ideally be.”
-Alain de Botton

Matt’s passion for restoring architectural ornament and a sense of wonder to contemporary architecture is one of the defining features of MGLM’s approach. With a goal of creating beautiful buildings that stop people in delight, Matt specializes in meticulous decorative details that enrich and bestow honor upon every project. No detail is too small to escape his attention or serve to imbue a space with beauty and a manifestation of the client’s unique personality.

Matt regularly conceives and executes ornamental and decorative programs and designs for all types of buildings. An expert in the design of all things Art Nouveau and its various branches (e.g. Stile Floreale, Modernisme, Jugendstil, & Secession) he has created thematic content and served extensively as a thematic, decorative, and ornamental consultant for numerous high profile projects. Recently he was responsible for the interior design and detailing of the major spaces in the Paris and Frankfurt Temples of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and has worked on decorative and ornamental details for nearly a dozen other temples worldwide. A published and awarded artist and designer, Matt has served as guest design critic at Judson University, Andrews University, and the University of Notre Dame—the latter his alma mater, where he received his Bachelor’s of Architecture and Master’s of Architectural Design and Urbanism. He further teaches and lectures on the importance of ornament and architectural detail in the human experience, and holds an executive certificate in Neuroscience for Architecture from the NewSchool of Architecture and Design.

Prior to founding MGLM, Matt played an integral role on a wide variety of projects including the MIPIM award-winning luxury Villa Kennedy Hotel in Frankfurt and the King’s Cross Master Plan for London, England. He currently heads the Preservation Committee of the Auxiliary Board for the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University and serves on the Board of Directors for Fenwick High School, where he also chairs the Facilities Committee. He sits on the Education Committee for the Chicago-Midwest Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, and in his free time, when he isn’t completing live drawings for auction, he is playing on a Master’s water polo team.