Interview CaVA Arizona winner
Arquideas interviews Andrés González-Meneses, from Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid (Spain), winner of our Canyon View Accommodation (CaVA) Arizona international architecture competition.
1.- What made you want to participate in our Canyon View Accommodation (CaVA) Arizona competition?
The competition brief itself. The Grand Canyon is a spectacular place. Architecture itself is amazing as well. The chance of combining both together seemed a thrilling idea to me.
2.- Briefly explain your proposal that won First Prize. Would you like it to become a reality?
The proposal aims to take advantage of the landscape from the interior spaces, whilst being subtly camouflaged from the exterior, becoming almost imperceptible from afar. The goal was to achieve this without forgetting an emphasis on the horizontality of the rock strata of the Grand Canyon.
Regarding whether I´d like to see it being built, I have two contradictory answers. My ego would love to see it built, but my sensibility as an architect would say no. I truly believe that the Grand Canyon doesn´t need any human artifacts, no matter how discrete they are.
Part of its beauty - not to mention its monumentality and uniqueness - comes from the fact that it has been untouched for thousands of years, and I wish for it to remain like that. As architects, we should learn to accept with humility where architecture is welcome and where it is not. However, and as an intellectual exercise, I think that there is no other place more beautiful than this to propose an architectural idea. For this reason, I enrolled in this exciting competition.
3.- What is your opinion of architectural education in Spain? How could it be improved in relation to the professional field?
I believe that the education and training of an architect in Spain is of a magnificent quality, and place huge value on the technical and aesthetic aspects of architecture. From my personal experience, I can say that I wouldn´t change the education that I received at ETSAM for any other.
However, more generally, I believe that it would be beneficial if the education of an architect in Spain included some more practical aspects so that the transition between university and the professional realm would be more natural.
4.- How are you going to approach your future as a professional?
My passion for architecture wills me to have my own studio one day. Despite completing my degree only one and a half years ago, this is something that I do not want to postpone too much, and I have decided to fight for this dream until it becomes a reality.
5.- And finally, tell us about your experience with Arquideas…
I consider this to have been a very positive experience. I have enjoyed the whole process as if I were a little child, from the day that I read the brief for the first time, until the day that I finalized my proposal. It is a recommendable experience and a very interesting exercise for those who love architecture.
I want to thank Arquideas for being such an amazing platform to encourage and enjoy architecture from multiple perspectives.
Thank you very much.
Discover the proposal here.