BOK Center Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA


Designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, the BOK Center is an 18,000-seat multi-purpose sports and entertainment venue that brings national and international events to Tulsa and the surrounding region. With a flexible layout, it accommodates sporting events, concerts and other large public gatherings. The BOK Center is located just west of downtown, with easy access to public and private transportation.


The design of the BOK Center reflects the client’s desire create a bold and unique architectural image for Tulsa. Large, sweeping glass and stainless steel walls spiral around the arena, dynamically tilting in elevation and section. The architectural language resonates with Tulsa’s Native American past, but the modern materials and scale look to the future. Lobbies and entrances are situated where the walls overlap and separate, pulling visitors into the spiraling space, directing their attention to the event inside and the city outside. The large expanses of glass will allow the building to be light-filled during the day, and a glowing beacon at night—the exterior lighting changes colors.


The arena incorporates site-specific artworks through a collaborative effort with local, national, and international artists. Artworks include “Dreamland”, a multi-story painting of horses by the celebrated Tulsa and New York City painter Joe Andoe; “Statum”, a cloudlike installation by sculptors Kendall Buster and Siemon Allen; “Realms”, four 22-foot diameter medallions embedded in the floors by Cherokee Nation father and son Bill and Demos Glass; and “The Tallgrass Prairies”, 25 scenes of the Tulsa prairie by local painter Mark Lewis.