Here, we ask designers to take a selfie and give us an inside look at their life.
Occupation: Architect and maker.
Studio location: Bethnal Green, London.
Describe what you make: U-Build is a revolutionary self-build system that empowers anyone to design and build their own customizable houses, cabins, interior fit-outs, and community projects. Being modular, U-Build is totally demountable and expandable so it can grow and move with its occupants. The system is customizable without limitation, and completely portable so can easily move locations.
The most important thing you’ve designed to date: Open source infrastructure for protestors allowing activist groups including Extinction Rebellion to occupy space and accelerate societal change.
Describe the problem your work solves: To make construction a more inclusive and accessible activity. To provide a guided construction experience that sits somewhere in between hiring a builder/architect and starting from scratch with raw materials. To challenge the idea that building projects must create waste. Instead of building plasterboard walls and tearing them down when no longer needed, our components are more like owning pieces of furniture: You can disassemble them without damage, take them with you when you move, and sell them to others when you’re finished.
Describe the project you are working on now: Our wider project is on a generative platform called U-Sketch that will enable clients/designers to create their own U-Build designs virtually with minimal input from our team, and have them delivered to their door (in the U.K.) or downloaded to a local CNC workshop to them in other parts of the world. This will enable us to help more people and reduce production costs.
A new or forthcoming project we should know about: The second phase of a fit-out of London’s County Hall on South Bank for workspace provider Sustainable Ventures. Phase 1 was to install removable partitions into a temporary space on the third floor (without putting any screws in the walls!), and two years on Phase 2 is to relocate the partitions to their new space on the fifth floor, whilst doubling the capacity of the workspaces. The project will be complete by the end of April.
What you absolutely must have in your studio: Beautiful high-ceiling light space, filled with modular boxes of all shapes and sizes. Space to prototype new ideas, and somewhere to sit outside in the sun. We love shared meals and lunches.
What you do when you’re not working: Converting an electric van, writing a book on Protest Architecture for RIBA, and designing structures for festivals.
Sources of creative envy: The natural world.
The distraction you want to eliminate: Sleep.
Concrete or marble? Concrete.
High-rise or townhouse? Townhouse
Remember or forget? Remember.
Aliens or ghosts? Aliens.
Dark or light? Light.