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olympia katsarou





Olympia Katsarou


Certi cations English

Canterbury School of Architecture Bachelor of Architecture(BA Hons RIBA Part 01) Grade 2:1 (Second Class Upper Division) 2010-2014


Greek Ministry of Education


4rth State Lyceum,Alexandroupolis,Greece Graduated with 18.87/20.0 2006-2009

Grade 7.0

C2 Level English

According to CEFR Experience/Workshops

French DALF C1

Part 01 Architectural Assistant,

for Architecture Initiative, London,Uk June-September 2014

Greek:Native Technical Skills Photoshop Rhino(Vray) Model Making Illustrator Autocad Hand Drawing In design 3DsMax A er E ects

Working Sta UCA Student Ambassandor Scheme,

University for the creative arts (UCA) Canterbury, November-July 2014


Freelance 3d visualisations,

for David Sinclair Architects, Avenida Emidio Navarro 291, 2750-337 Cascais,Portugal 2013

University for the creative arts (UCA) 2013,’’ATHENS’2013 Research Publication [A research compilation covering many facets of contemporary and historical Athenian culture].

Participant Student Metabolisms PAW Architecture Workshop

University for the creative arts (UCA) 2012,’’Along the Olympic Frontier’’ [stage 2 BA Architecture Students have published the results of their design research projects situated Along the Olympic Frontier]

in collaboration with Department of Architecture,University of Greece Project Title:Ailanthus Domestica



Participant at Astritsi Cultural Camping,Department of Sculpture,Scenery design, Heraklion,Greece 2010/2011 Participant Student Contemporary Dance Workshop at the National School of Dance, in collaboration with


e Hellenic Ministry of Culture and Tourism

Personal Statement

During my undergraduate studies, at the Canterbury School of Architecture (UCA),I was able to explore a variety of design methods and conceptual approaches, which have helped me gain a strong academic background on research, and design strategies towards a thematic agenda that interfaces between the cultural contexts of architecture and society.I managed to develop my architectural knowledge further by gaining practical work experience next to David Sinclair Architects (DSAA). During my time there I got involved in design assignments, which include the investigation of residential planning projects.I participated in various architectural workshops and I am now eager to continue my academic studies, feeling confident that I will fulfill my expectations, during my future studies. During my second year in Canterbury School of Architecture (CSA),I was introduced to the subject matter of urban design, which fascinated me the most. I experimented with a project regarding Landscape Urbanism, that required a thorough exploration and analysis of both urban and natural environments. Using site analysis we were required to identify a motive, put forward an architectural design which would respond to the needs and spatial characteristics of the site, located in Dartford, UK. Using some references from cinema genres I developed a spatial narrative, consisting of a series of localized interventions within the urban fabric.Getting inspired by this thorough urban analysis I grasped the opportunity to implement ideas and develop further my passion for urban design and research while writing my research thesis. In turn, for my topic I examined and analyzed the reasons behind the gradual disintegration of central Athens in a hypothetical analogy between the city and a self-destructing machine, which in turn has been causing traumatic events to the city’s urban and social fabric. I consider myself to be a restless thinker and a self-motivated individual holding many artistic qualities with a passion for dance, hand crafted architectural models and illustrations as I believe that model making is an important process from which design can emerge. I always try to achieve excellence alone but I am also able to work in a team with fellow designers.When it comes to characterize myself I would describe me as a responsible and rigorous individual with great organization skills which I can prove with my engagement as a member of the Student Ambassador Scheme in the University for the Creative Arts (UCA). I am a strong believer in travelling as a medium of broadening your horizons. Travelling is the best way to understand your surrounding world but also to gain appreciation and sensitivity towards the materiality of the natural environment. Thats why I spent most of my free time exploring and recording mostly familiar but also unfamiliar cities and landscapes. I feel extremely thankful of the time spent travelling abroad as it has helped me appreciate the individuality of any landscape.

This portfolio showcases a sample of my work during my studies as a BA student in Canterbury school of architecture [UCA]. References together with other samples of work or original documents can be provided upon request.


Canterbury School of Architecture 2010-2014


Religious Void Religious residential condenser Year 03 Semester 01


O.O.F.F. Introducing a new olympic trading label Year 03 Semester 02

03 Athens: The city of self destruction Research thesis analyzing the disintegration of the Athenian city center. Year 03 Semester 01


Landscape Urbanism

A spatial narrative introducing a series of cinematic architectural interventions Year 02 Semester 01


Forest Listeners

Proposing a living network , offering forestical protection Year 02 Semester 01


Ailanthus Domestica Housing unit scenario responding to Pelions territorial metabolism Workshop 2013

Religious Void During this project we were asked to propose and design a housing scheme together with an exhibition space located on the air space of an existing highrise building , called Carradale House , located in the east London.The design brief requested to also introduce our own narrative/protagonists who would occupy the proposed building.Being quite influenced by the site location but also from John Hejduk I decided to adress my design proposal to various religious intellectuals. ’’The mystery cannot be explained it can not be caught in any language ...Instead the Masques are intended to invoke the ‘‘mystery’’ to create space for its magic’’ John Hejduk Acoording to Hejduk a masque could represent any form or power that is physically unrepresentable.Embracing this belief led me to ‘‘rename’’ my protagonists into masques.Religious Void is a building housing various religious intellectuals which all represent a different masque.This housing experiment will gradually lead the resident from solitude to the notion of communal leaving and coexisting with different religious representatives. This housing experiment could eventually lead to the creation of new forms of religious beliefs based on evolutionary ‘‘alillopathy’’ derived from the everyday co-existance. ‘‘Around the void is a periphery which contains not only everything uncentral but everything central as well.Conscious and unconscious are all on the outside right beside each other and very close to the so called ‘‘reality’’. John Hejduk The proposed synthesis constitues by a spatial but also conceptual core,that of the ‘‘Voided Center’’.This space will represent the space of contemplation while conceptually it is a central religious void where religion is appreciated as something neutral and universal.

RELIGIOUS CONDENSER Site location/concept The proposal building is situated on top of the airspace of Carradale house,situated in East London,UK.The building is hosting religious intellectuals representing a religious diversity in order to promote and explore the outcomes of such a various religious cohort.The initial idea has derived from the site analysis.More specifically close to the given site location there is a vicarage belonging to a near by Catholic Church.Further research revealed that in a radious of thirty meters there are 7 different religious condensers,all representing a different religious type.The building is divided in three main programmatical areas.Housing units on the left side of the building,leading to a central spiritual space of contemplation and finally on the right hand side of the building there are more public programms such as a library,study areas a kitchen and a dinning area.The main access to the building is happening via the existing staircase of the Carradale House.From there onwards the next three floors there are two additional staircases,extended the vertical circulation of the building for another fifteen meters.



a d

[a] Carradale House [b] Belfron Tower [c] Vicarage House [d] Glenkerry House


Design Development

y lavator


ace ion sp t a l p contem

space ation l p m e cont

Version I

Version II

Floor Plans

Plans H F



Plans Second floor




The proposal was arranged and designed in order to seperate the private programs of living towards the more public uses,such as the library and dining area situated on the right hand sideA of the building.









First Floor



On the first floor the resident has got access to the housing units.After descending the main staircase the resident has already come across to the lavatory abd is now ready to contemplate in the central area of the buildA ing(temple).The temple is designed in a way to capture light from above.This floor also offers accessibility to a library and to the study areas.


Scale 1:200 A


west elevation

North Elevation

east elevation

Scale 1:200

north elevation

scale 1:200





Floor Plans H













Second floor



The proposal was arranged and designed in order to seperate the private programs of living towards the more public uses,such as the library and dining area situated on the right hand side of the building. A


Top View


A Planting area B Temple ‘Voided Center’ C Lavatory D Dining Area

E Kitchen Area F Courtyard G Library/Study Area H Housing Units

Scale 1:200


section a-a

section b-b

Scale 1:200

section c-c

scale 1:20

Exploded Axonometric [Contemplation Temple]


Horizontal I beams 40cm thick Gypsium coating Concrete finish 20mm thick


Additional I beam structural frame 40cm supporting circulation corridors


Vertical I beam structural frame 40cm[UPN]


Additional structural UPN frame 40cm


Composite concrete structural slab 15cm




Secondary I beam type HEB 40cm

Primary I beam type HEB 80cm

[Primary support] RC buttresses 50cm thick

O.O.F.F. During the second semester of my third year , we have to work on our design thesis. During the design thesis we were assigned to create our own brief and design proposal based on the thematics of the post olympic legacy , once we were experiencing the year after the London olympic games.To achieve that and always in relation to the site location I desided to criticize the olympic games as a medium of big coorporation branding.Instead I proposed a branding olympic network on which small holders have the chance to promote and export their products globally.More specifically my project is called O.O.F.F.(stands for OLIVE OIL FAIRTRADE FOUNDATION) and it is a building representing a non profit organisation established to support greek farming communities as well as educating them on better ways of promoting and branding themselves similar to the UK based Fairtrade Foundation. The building is a cultural museum of greek agriculture , concentrating on the promotion of olive oil and certifing the best greek olive oil producers with the O.O.F.F. label.The certification will be realised by a team of scientists able to test the olive oil in the factory departement of the proposed building , situated next to the Panathinaikon stadium,in Athens,Greece. The idea has originally derived from the London 2012 means to represent the ‘‘fairest’’ games ever,where millions of visitors were served over 40 millions of Fairtrade certified products,across all venues helping to support farmers,workers and their communities in developing countries.Adjusting this concept into the greek reality would triger Greeces’ promotion and exportation methods.Via this building Greece would be able to export its goods in a global market scale the best way possible,ensuring the countries’ copyrights but also achieving the fairest trade and sells prices for the smallholder farmers involved. Consequently , a series of different branches similar to the O.O.F.F. will be spread globally to keep the fairtrade food legacy alive.


Floor plans

Basement [-3.60m] 1.production factory 3.bottle filling 4.changing room

Ground Floor [0.00 m] 1.reception 2..exhibition area 3.void garage 5.sitting area

First Floor [+4.70 m] 1. library area 3.void 4. balcony

Second Floor [+9.10 m] 1. foyer 2..auditorium 3.translation booth 4. sound check room

Third Floor [+13.20 m] 1 cafeteria/restaurant 2.a terrace 2b. planting area 3.timber deck 4.cuisine

Fourth Floor [+17.65m] 1.reception 2.web design offices 3.meeting room

Fifth Floor [+20.90 m] 1. marketing director’s office 2. P.R./marketing offices 3. archive 4. canopy

Sixth Floor [+24.00m] 1. general manager’s office 2. meeting room 3. balcony

Scale 1:100

Exploded Axonometric


14. 15. 16. 17. 18.

3. Steel decking sheet 4. 100x200mm primary steel “I” beam (RSJ) 5. 120x60mm secondary steel “I” beam (RSJ) 6. 50x50mm structural steel connection pieces 7. 20mm ceiling panels in Corten 8. 25mm x 25mm steel section joists 9. 160x160mm hollow steel sections 10. curtain wall glass facade 11. Spider fixing accessory to curtain wall 12. 40mm steel window substructure 13. Steel stanchion 120 x 120 mm 14. 20mm thick pre-cast cement service pavers 15. 10 mm vapour barrier 16. 70mm cement screed 17. 70mm inverted insulation “Roofmate” 18. 200mm reinforced concrete roof slab

10. 12. 11. 13.

2. 1. 3.


7. 5.




SCALE 1:20

SCALE 1:20


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South Elevation [Eforionos street]

West elevation [Agras Street]

SCALE 1:100


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The City of Self Destruction RESEARCH THESIS

The topic of my research thesis was examining and analyzing the reasons behind the gradual disintegration of the Athenian city centre , in a hypothetical analogy of the city to a machine of self destruction , autonomously causing traumatic events to its urban but also social fabric. In the late 1960’s the artist Jean Tinguely creates and displays in the Museum of Modern Arts(MoMA) a self destructing art sculpture called “ “Homage to New York”. If we begin by accepting the hypothesis that Athens is truly a city that is autonomously causing great destruction to itself as a proved point then we can easily see and underline the similarities between a city like Athens and an art piece such as Jean Tinguely’s machine of self destruction. In fact this art piece was working as a surrealistic representation of a blast wheel unit.The Athenian contemporary “polis” is working similarly to the blast wheel unit.It is a living machine that is constanlty accepting the imput of a variety of products(immigrants,financial restrictions,citizens from the outskirts of Attica),fed through the overhead storage. After the imput of the product-citizen the “machine” is sending the product to the centre of the wheel unit(the historical and downgrated centre of Athens) where the wheel is rotating at high speed. In this case the city is using this centripetal power in order to scatter some of the newcomers of the city towards the upgrated city suburbs,while is leaving some others to the centre of this rotation(city centre) working as the leftovers of a machine operation.Those who cannot follow the centripetal power end up in an opening in the stationary control cage,from where they are discharged on to the bladed wheel. At this point the imput citizen is picked by the inner ends of the city-machine and is rapidly accelarating his inhabitation in order to send himself outside of the spining wheel. This is symbolically the dead end of the former urban lifestyle in the city centre of Athens as it was known for, since the beggining of the new centrury.


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Landscape Urbanism During the second year of my studies and more specifically , in the landscape urbansim project situated in Dartford , UK we were asked to to analyse the environment and it’s infrastructure, explore it’s spatial characteristics and potentials and try to understand it’s needs. I was seeking for a motive or dysfunction in the landscape , a part or an area that was emerging active changes and development , but I ended up proposing something completely experiential ,relying on my own view and percepective towards the site location.Therefore I proposed a spatial narrative for a sequence of interventions within the urban landscape.In order to do so I borrowed some references from the genre of cinema and more specifically from the movie “The Stalker”.Combining the movie scenes to some further research on Bernard Tchumi and his architectural interventions I came up with the idea of an experiential strip with which three different user types could interact with , following a different journey ,always reaching the same destination in the outskirts of Dartford called Dartford Heath. The conception of this approach was originally derived from an urban finding during the site visit.The ruined roof of Dartfords history museum helped me sketch out its infrastructure and I therefore ended up translating this sketch into a collage where the ‘‘experiential strip started appearing.

Collapsed Roof ,Dartford History Museum

Collage of initial sketch

Various experiential strips

Various translations of the experiential destination.

Forest Listeners During the second year of my studies and more specifically , in the first semester we were asked to design an architectural intervention , highlighting the co existance between humans and animals.In the said brief I decided to focus on the creation of an architectural network , able to communicate with the natural data sent from the trees being under threat , in order to provide forestical protection to an area in Kent , which is undergoing natural preservation.The idea intitally derived during the site location , when I came across to the gradual decay of tree leaves caused by an insect , called spidermite.In order to understand the decay process I started investigating the tree trunk from the beggining of its birth towrads its different developement stages , while translating this research onto actual hand made drawing.The final proposal was much influenced by the tree trunk investigations and the proposed program ended up being a lab/observation tower.Via the data transmition the special educated observer can ‘‘hear’’ whether a tree is in danger.The key to this idea is the bio digital data exchange , a recent idea , that allows any living creature to be able to connect to a machine.In other words , the landscape becomes virtual , dynamic and encoded.The proposed network is able to enclose all the visible or invisible natural data.The network is now able to create a series of sognifications and visualisations of the encoded data ,helping humans to interact and therefore protect any type of natural living creature.

Ailanthus Domestica Ailanthus domestica is a collaboration project during PAW metabolism architectural workshop.During this workshop we faced the challenge to design protocols for the ensemble and â&#x20AC;&#x153;recipesâ&#x20AC;? for living, based on examples of active territorial metabolism, in order to prove that the cultural and biological reproduction of the body, could become an important generator for the transformative methods of territories, able to set up new conditions of living.Our investigation focus was on the tree Ailanthus altissima.In the proposed scenario Ailanthus Altissima had established populations throughout most of cultivable land in South Pelion. Due to the allelopathy phenomenon, the tree did not allow the growth of other plants resulting to its predominance in the local flora. The man has therefore been adapted to the intense action of the tree and has now capitulated all the cultivable area. Collaboration Team: Joanna Sotiriou , Olympia Katsarou

Proffesional [A. PIRBRIGHT ROAD-PRIVATE,RESIDENTIAL SCHEME] Eight contemporary residential units were proposed by Architecture Initiative on a narrow light industrial site in Southfields, South West London. Generous modern apartments and duplexes, flooded with natural light.This residential scheme is situated within three-storey town houses with full basements, designed to compliment and continue the existing adjacent Victorian terrace. The new residential units have been arranged by the AI team within four townhouses, to mirror the housing stock of the local area. The design was intended to be in keeping with the local vernacular, proposing a contemporary interpretation of the existing Victorian properties through the careful detailing of traditional materials and construction techniques. Intelligent orientation of the proposal as the site narrows, allowed for the addition of the fourth town house and units at first and second floor level, whilst mitigating any overlooking issues and maintaining the privacy of both neighboring and future occupants. [B. BARRACK ROAD DEVELOPMENT] Through Lord Nash, the Education Funding Authority, has formed an innovative partnership with Northamptonshire County Council and Architecture Initiative to develop a radical alternative development model that utilises and re-invents the redundant Royal Mail sorting office in Northampton town centre, combining the provision of much needed school places with urban regeneration within the context of a mixed use development. The proposal provides a 420 place primary school, 1,500 place secondary school with a 300 place sixth form, as well as a private nursery, cafe, gym and residential units. The AI team identified the empty shell of the building as offering an ideal framework for the development of a state-of-the-art education facility. The extensive floor area at over 21,000 sqm, regular structural grid and generous floorto-floor heights are ideally configured for simple conversion to educational use. The adaptive and regenerative re-use of the old sorting office building provides a modern educational establishment that has a significantly reduced carbon footprint and less embodied energy than a new build equivalent. source of the text:

1.Pirbright Road.Exterior rendered in situ view of the proposed scheme

2.Pirbright Road.Rendered Elevation of the proposed scheme

Proposed Roof Plan

Section of proposed design In context

East Side Elevation

Elevation from adjacent property (92 pirbright road)

Section showing light wells at the front and back

East Elevation

New pedestrian New pedestrian entrance to site

bicycle storeage for bicycle storeage for use secondary school secondary school use Covered 200 space bicycle storeage for secondary school use

entrance to site

New pedestrian

Multi use games areas with a coloured porous tarmac Existing cluster of trees use games a coloured porous tarmac Existing of trees surface, basedareas on a with 5-a-side pitch dimensions, alongcluster the border retainedMulti surface, based on a 5-a-side pitch dimensions, along the border retained and cut back

Pedestrian pathway tha Pedestrian thatbu r alongsidepathway the school alongside the school build

and cut back Existing cluster of trees Multifence. use games areas with a coloured tarmac surface, weldmesh Secondary school external play deck weldmesh fence. along the border retained Secondary school external play deck and cut back for evening use and surrounded by a 3.0m weldmesh fence. Pedestrian pathway Secondary school external teaching Pedestrian pathway for safe access from Road markings to allow for deck Road markings totoallow for safe access from large vehicles turn safely. the back of the site for large vehicles to turn the backPedestrian of the site pathway

Pedestrian pathway

alongside the schoo


entrance to site

for safe access from Road markings to allow for Refuse & recycling Accesstototurn safely. vehicles the back of the site largeAccess Refuse & recycling waste store undercroft car to park waste store undercroft car park Refuse & recycling Access to waste store undercroft car park Existing tree retained

Multi use games areas with a coloured porous Multi use games areas with coloured porous tarmac surface, based ona basketball court tarmac surface, based on basketball court Multi use games areas with a coloured tarmac surface, based on basketball court surrounded by a 3.0m weldmesh fence.

cycle parking spaces cycle parking spaces Soft landscaped social area for the Soft landscaped socialschool area for the secondary secondary school social area for the Soft landscaped secondary school Fenced boundary between Primary & Multi use games areas with a coloured porous Secondary school play space Multi use games withbased a coloured porous tarmacareas surface, on netball court tarmac surface, based on netball court Multi use games areas with a coloured tarmac . surface, based on netball court dimensions, . by a 3.0m weldmesh fence.

Reception year play area Reception year play area Reception play area Soft play area with play eqipment Primary school planters on ‘Habitat’ areas to year encourage Colourful hard playspace Soft play area with play eqipment school ‘Habitat’ areas to encourage and planting to the site boundary Primary external play planters deck on pupiil engagement with Colourful hard playspace Soft play area with play equipment Primary school planters on ‘Habitat’ areas to encourage and planting to the site boundary external play deck pupiil engagement with Colourful hard playspace nature and planting to the site boundary external play deck games nature pupil engagement with games nature games 30 covered Primary school cycle parking spaces

West Elevation


at runs

Secure vehicular & peddestrain Secure vehicular access gate & peddestrain access gate

runs uilding ding

y that runs ol building

Secure vehicular & peddestrain access gate

Secondary School Secondary School main entrance main entrance

South Elevation

Weldmesh fence

New 2.8m high

Existing low wall to be

weldmesh fence

retained. Existing low wall demolished

Safe pedestrian crossing Safe crossing onpedestrian shared surface on shared surface Safe pedestrian crossing on shared surface

Paving extends potentially Paving potentially ontoextends public realm onto public realm Paving extends potentially onto public realm New pedestrian crossing New pedestrian crossing & four way light system


& four way light system New pedestrian crossing & four way light system





New raised benches to New raised benches to match ‘dark’ paving match ‘dark’ paving New raised benches to match ‘dark’ paving New paved shared New paved shared entrance plaza entrance plaza New paved shared New ramp and stairs to entrance plaza New rampthe and stairs to match paving match the paving New ramp and stairs to match the paving New illuminated ‘light box’ New illuminated ‘light box’ signs signs New illuminated ‘light box’ signs


sting tree retained

Primary School Primary mainSchool entrance main entrance

Section A-A Long Section through circulation street and voids

New street trees along Barrack Road that allow New trees Barrack thatnight, allow thestreet building toalong be visible bothRoad day and New streettotrees along both Barrack that allow the&building be visible dayRoad and night, assisting with security whilst enhancing the the building tosecurity be visible bothenhancing day and night, & assisting with whilst the street scene & assisting with security whilst enhancing the street scene street scene

Potential continuation of paving new shared surface on highway.


80 39°33’00.9”N 21°00’00.2”E


Thank you for your consideration


olympia katsarou Portfolio 2014  
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