Zico Smith

design manager

A native of North Little Rock, Arkansas, Mathew "Zico" Smith is an architectural designer at modus studio focused on the storytelling ability of architecture through details and process. Zico holds a Bachelor of Arts in both French and Art History from the University of Arkansas Little Rock and a Master of Architecture from the University of Tennessee. He has worked within the construction and architecture sides of the industry during his career, including his most recent architectural experience at TMPartners in Nashville, designing a variety of healthcare, civic, and institutional projects.


Persistent and determined — this is how many of Zico's friends and colleagues would describe him, as he often uses shortcomings and failures as lessons and motivation to prove his capability. He enjoys working at different scales, from the building to the object, and uniting them through effective conceptual development. He is sensitive to the intangible aspects of design and the sense of place that can only be developed through rigor and experimentation, enjoying the odd, speculative ideas that challenge current conventions in architecture. Zico believes good design brings something to a building beyond just four walls and a roof. Architecture has the ability to sooth or excite and can resonate with people on very personal and subconscious level.


In his free time, Zico enjoys outdoor activities with his wife, Callie, and two kids, Magnolia and Finnegan. His love for camping, canoeing, and hiking correlates well with his interest in mapping geographies and other data. He is also a passionate soccer player, coach, and referee and is an Arsenal FC and Nashville SC fan.