Architecture competition "Pape Nature Park Gateway" Honorable mention - Alessia Falcini and Christelle Maalouf

We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the winners of one of our Honorable mentions for the “Pape Nature Park Gateway” competition - Alessia Falcini and Christelle Maalouf from Italy!

Alessia Falcini and Christelle Maalouf from Italy

We are both architects and urban planners. We graduated in Urban Planning and Policy Design from Politecnico di Milano  in 2016, where we often had the opportunity to collaborate within international and multi-disciplinary design teams, increasing our ability to work in multicultural contexts.

After university studies we started our careers working in architecture studios in Milan.

Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where company/ individuals have been involved?

Being both architects and urban planners, we have worked on projects of diverse scales, tackling the smallest details as well as planning across cities. This aspect gives us a holistic insight on projects regardless of the scale and allows us to better manage the various phases and characteristics of design and construction.

What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?

We consider architecture to be a fundamental part of our lives and the lives of others. It is the main element we encounter daily and being architects allows us to design solutions for the ever-changing conditions we live in to ensure better quality of living.

For us, architecture is more of an experience rather than a physical static building, and each living being perceives it differently, which gives any building or construction a different identity.

Architecture is a matter of suggestion, feeling. Every architectural artifact is born from the emotions of its creator and provokes as many emotions in its observer. Arousing emotions is as important as it is a dangerous role. Therefore, the first question we ask ourselves when we start designing is: what kind of feelings should this project inspire? From this point our design process begins, without ever losing sight of the ultimate goal.

Why do you participate in architecture vision competitions?

As young architects, we believe that vision competitions allow us to express our ideas and realize our designs in a non-constrained manner. Moreover, we believe that it kick-starts our careers and gives us exposure in the design and architecture world. Seeing other entries for the same competition allows us also to learn and grow by seeing other points of views and solutions designed for the same project.

What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture vision competitions?

We advise all young architects and designers to participate in vision competitions for several reasons. First of all, having an opportunity to express their ideas and do projects they can call their own. Second, the need for new ideas and perceptions that young architects have but that do not always have the occasion or possibility to employ being at the beginning of their careers. Finally, vision competitions introduce us to new contexts and locations in the world we did not know existed, and allows us to travel with our minds and ideas to different corners of the world spreading them and challenging us to learn to design in places we are not used to tackling.

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