Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire interviews architect Antonis Perpatidis (AP).
Antonis Perpatidis (AP) has recently been awarded with the A’ Design Awards and Competition.
Interview with Antonis Perpatidis at Thursday 16th of June 2011:
FS: Could you please tell us more about your art and design background? What made you become an artist/designer? Have you always wanted to be a designer?
AP: To this date, I still wonder what lead me to become an architect. My family background is completely irrelevant to this field. However, since a very early age, I was expressing myself through drawing and sketching. It was a combination of luck and my aptitude for expressing through sketching.
FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
AP: The practice was formed in 2003 by Thanasis Chrysomallis, Antonis Perpatidis and Manolis Vourakis. Since then, Office 25 Architects has developed a successfull approach on the market, expanding not only their workforce but their locus as well. The practice operates in a project-oriented network structure. At every project stage, we team up discussing, researching and drawing, to develop the concept of each project. The variety of projects that the practice undertakes has been a well-considered decision. It could easily switch from competition design projects to private housing developments which will be accomplished in the best possible timeframe, always with respect to the aesthetics of each work.
FS: What is “design” for you?
AP: It is a way of expressing myself. Some people sing, others dance, I draw.
FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
AP: There is not one specific thing that we like to design. We work on different projects and what usually intrigue us is the scenario and the program
FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
AP: There is not only one. Many of them which are in our website www.o25.gr, used to be at some point our favorite.
FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
AP: A staircase for a shoe store.
FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
AP: I draw using black pens on thick/hard paper, a modeler and a renderer. As far as the materials are concerned, we use and combine natural materials on their raw form.
FS: When do you feel the most creative?
AP: It is not specific. It depends on the circumstances.
FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
AP: The factors I always take into account are: functionality, simplicity, budget and the creation of an impression/idea.
FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
AP: I can not describe them. It is a black box procedure.
FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
AP: It depends on the quality of and compliance to the initial plan.
FS: What makes a design successful?
AP: Both the user and the designer to be equally satisfied.
FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
AP: Simplicity, functionality, impression, invention.
FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
AP: I do not believe they differ from any other human being.
FS: How do you think the “design field” is evolving? What is the future of design?
AP: As far as design is concerned, innovative and new materials are very important. In our profession I consider to be very important the evolution of software.
FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
AP: I have not held an exhibition.
FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
AP: As I mentioned above, it is black box.
FS: How would you describe your design style? What made you explore more this style and what are the main characteristics of your style? What’s your approach to design?
AP: It cannot be described in one word. However, I think that we always approach from the user’s point of view and the impression/idea we want to create.
FS: Where do you live? Do you feel the cultural heritage of your country affects your designs? What are the pros and cons during designing as a result of living in your country?
AP: I live in Thessaloniki, Greece. I don’t know how. It certainly affects our work but I can not explain how.
FS: How do you work with companies?
AP: They pay, I draw.
FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
AP: The most important thing for a designer is their portfolio. The companies, after having seen a lot of portfolios and doing a lot of research they should select one and give to him all the data he needs to create the project. If they do not like the initial designs they should reject him. We should never forget that the budget has a crucial part and we should be honest with it. Additionally, there should not be a state of vassalage or subordination between the designer and the client. There has to be a win-win situation.
FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
AP: Architecture, in a way, is a solution to a problem. The most important thing is to have facts and data right. The more the merrier. Then, we focus on research, design and the presentation.
FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
AP: Iphone, Arca lighter by Flos, Barcelona chair, Mac pro and Alessi coffee maker.
FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
AP: A lot of work.
FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
AP: Work a lot.
FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
AP: It is a job that occupies with pleasant moments of people life. Usually there is positive and creative spirit around it. Even the “problems” on it are usually creative. Also, working on a team is most of the times satisfying. A negative thing is that sometimes you do not earn enough money to buy what you design for others.
FS: What is your “golden rule” in design?
AP: In the end of each work both designer and user must be satisfied.
FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
AP: I do not know. There are many skills that are important in different ways. I suppose all designers are keen on expressing themselves through their designs and sketches. Also it needs patient.
FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
AP: Black pens, paper, a modeler, a renderer, PC or a Mac.
FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
AP: Work is always my priority in the expense of my free time.
FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
AP: It is not specific. It depends on the project, the client, the architect and their collaboration.
FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
AP: How much does it cost? I heard this question in every possible way you can imagine. Polite, rude, direct or indirect.
FS: What was your most important job experience?
AP: Job experience is very important. All my previous jobs have given me some experience.
FS: Who are some of your clients?
AP: I do not want to mention them.
FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
AP: I honestly do not know. Design is not always fun. Sometimes it is so time – consuming and painful. However, if you are satisfied with the solution, you get a kind of satisfaction.
FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
AP: We have some plans for making projects in different parts of the world.
FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
AP: I always work with o25 team.
FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
AP: Office 25 architects are SHORTLISTED on dupont “CHANGING THE FACE” 2011 of Pushkinsky cinema international competition. “In every country, in every city there is building that has unique emotional meaning for the community. A building with an important public function, controversial design, a great location, problematic conditions makes it a perfect subject for a global brainstorm about its future.”
FS: How can people contact you?
AP: Through the contact page of our website, which is www.o25.org
FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.