UNEDITED Natalia Thomas of BOX Magazine interviews our director Albert Mo, on design, life and process. This is an unedited version of the interview and is different from the version published on the Winter 2011 issue of the magazine.
NT: Tell me about your journey in becoming a designer / architect. AM: The real journey started after 6 years of uni, when we established our practice. It was all about trial and error, and starting from scratch. The thing is when you started to work on real projects, you realised that you really know so little, and that forced us to learn from people around us: builders, tradesmen, engineers etc, and we did learn and absorb things very quickly. In the early years, we were also blessed by the support of many architect mentors, like Mark Healy, Richard Swansson, Rob McBride, Rob Stent, and Jose Alfano.
NT: How do you initially approach a project? - Ie, do you start with the clients' products, the end users, the budget etc... AM: After meeting the client and visiting the site and before drawing the first line, I start by imagining, imagine what I want people to see, touch and smell. That's why I love physical models, we still build them for every residential houses that we do in the office. With the model, I can kneel down, squint with one eye, and visualise and feel the space. And then we design the spaces...quite often it will take me at least a couple of weeks before we have drawings of some sort. My staffs always ask if I'm ready to let them start, I always hold back
and make sure I get the feel right, before I commit... NT: Is your creative process different for each project and client? AM: The process is the same, and the creative part does not stop until the building is built. Creativity to us is a process, a refinement route. We also refer to other architectsâ€™ works, both past and present. We are not afraid to make the references, as we believe it is impossible to copy an authentic work, what with every architect's detailing language being different. Client is also another important and dynamic factor, we refer them to as part of the human context, which directly influences the
Published on Dec 11, 2011