In the summer of 2013 me and a couple of my friends went around Europe to visit and interview a few offices across Europe. We mainly visited the office of Ido Avissar in Paris called LIST and Baukuh a small “garage band” sort of collective started by a Pier Paolo Tambureli and his partner Andrea Zanderigo. We had plans of visiting some other studios but we dropped the ideas after these two visits. A few months later me and my friend Nazmy Anaur interviewed Kersten Geers of OFFICE KGDVS and a couple of months later Freek Persyn of 51n4e.
The urge to interview came from multiple directions: there was the history of The Berlage where we knew that students used to actively interview architects; we wanted to closely see what our mentors’ workspaces look like? How do they practice? A sort of a thrill to know the ‘behind the scenes’. But more importantly we felt that there’s something interesting brewing In European architecture that does not reach the mainstream architectural broadcasting in most Asian belts -particularly the Subcontinent belts. In particular, we were attracted to the subtleness of the responses that these offices / architects brought to their projects. Soon we also realized that most of these practices were also a close-knit group of friends who frequently collaborated with each other on several projects. We could not interview DOGMA partly due to the hesitance of sounding stupid and secondly, both Pier Vittorio Aureli and Martino Tattara were not involved in teaching us at the school.
In this post I will try to build on the idea of subtlety in the works of the above mentioned offices over several smaller posts in due time.
The title, subtle is the new radical, comes from our graduation discussion and a remark that I made about the works that were being by colleagues under the guidance and tutorship of Freek Persyn and Ido Avissar particularly.