INTERview WITH KATHY BASHEVA
Q: How did you get into architecture?
A: I come from family of engineers. From a very young age I expressed interest in buildings, and the built environment. I remember at age of 3 drawing an accurate depiction of the building of the nursery and astonishing the adults with its accuracy. As I was growing up I became interested in history, art, science, maths, geometry, sociology and psychology. I find architecture is the one profession which encompasses all these subjects. For me it is the ultimate creation of new forms of living. We create space, flow, we direct the dynamics of the living and inhabiting space. It is a very important task with huge consequence if done wrong.
Q: What can you offer clients that others can’t?
A: Our approach to staying ahead of our competitors is a simple one: we are passionate about design and architecture. Elegance and timelessness through refined choice of materials is at the heart of our design. Context of the project is paramount and is part of the client’s brief - the response may be complimentary or contrasting. We surround ourselves with the best people in the industry, which enables us to take inspiration from their creativity to infuse novelty and originality in to our projects. We understand our market, market trends and create value where none exists, which is what customers look for in an architect.
A design company lead by a female and a foreigner clearly stands out. This already gives a unique filter to our work. The distinctive viewpoint I have established in the practice is bringing on board my international experience and understanding the client’s emotional attachment to their project and listen to the client. The Studio’s prime ethos - ‘we are here for our clients’. This of course has its own challenges and every aspect of the design needs to be communicated and the client approval obtained.
Q: What’s your design ethos?
A: We are passionate about design and architecture. Elegance and timelessness through refined choice of materials is in the heart of our design. Context of the project is paramount and is part of client’s brief - the response may be complimentary or contrasting. Last but not least, integration of the layers of complexity to achieve seamless design. We place a huge importance on originality mixed with intriguing environments, modern features and emerging finishes, materials and resources. Bespoke detail design has its own flair and ongoing challenges. Our practice will mix art, graphic and other creative solutions to support architectural design to answer the clients’ brief.
Q: Describe your dream project?
We firmly believe that our work impacts on the lives of everyone living in the vicinity of the project, and as such we take our social responsibility very seriously in addition to our innovative architectural work. My experience has showed me the effect good design has on the dynamics of family life. I would love to continue and deliver good design to more families. My ideal project is to deliver good quality design for more and designing and residential environment.
Q: How do you push the creative boundaries for a client who really wants to create something different?
A: Our philosophy revolves around simple, transparent and elegant designs. Other factors which we always incorporate into our work are commercial viability, practicality, value and creativity. This combination of style and functionality proves that our philosophy is unique to us. We serve to compare every project with a number of these corner stones, which offer a solid foundation and ensure client satisfaction. The overall result of this is that we achieve a built environment which is conceptualised, visualised and verbalised for our clients.
Q: What would you say to a client who is looking into a self build project?
There is nothing more invigorating than a client with a vision. We would recommend to surround themselves with people who can deliver their vision, professionals who are keen and understand the client’s viewpoint. Another really important aspect is to have a discussion about the budget from the onset . Designers and architects can work according to the client’s budget. Disclosing it from the onset assists them to achieve a good design within your budget.
Q: What advice would you give to someone looking for an architect?
There are a few key things to check. Portfolio and ability to deliver of course is the first step. However, ability to listen and take on board client’s requests is of importance too. After all it is the clients’ property and investment.