Q&A WITH B+H

B+H se­nior as­so­ci­ates, Ni­cholas Kis­sane and Tanya Mur­ray, dis­cuss their rise in B+H and how the next gen­er­a­tion is in­flu­enc­ing the firm’s ap­proach to ur­ban de­sign and ar­chi­tec­ture

Middle East Architect - - BRAND VIEW -

What at­tracted you to work for B+H?

B+H’s rep­u­ta­tion for be­ing ex­tremely col­lab­o­ra­tive and de­sign­ing peo­ple-cen­tric build­ings and com­mu­ni­ties re­ally drew us to the com­pany. It’s also es­tab­lished a strong com­pany ethos to cre­ate a sup­port­ive, in­spir­ing and em­pow­er­ing cul­ture. There’s a de­lib­er­ate fo­cus on cul­ti­vat­ing di­ver­sity and tal­ent, shar­ing les­sons learnt and ac­tively mak­ing space for cre­ativ­ity and in­no­va­tion to thrive. We felt that B+H was do­ing in­spir­ing projects that ex­cited us and was a firm that would al­low us to grow.

How do you feel the next gen­er­a­tion of ar­chi­tects is in­flu­enc­ing ar­chi­tec­ture and de­sign?

Our gen­er­a­tion has seen a lot of changes. We’ve grown up in times of rapid tech­no­log­i­cal, eco­nomic and global change, and this has af­fected how new de­sign­ers are think­ing about and per­ceiv­ing the world. Our gen­er­a­tion has a strong fo­cus on the ex­pe­ri­en­tial­ity of space. As de­sign­ers of both build­ings and cities, we’re think­ing not just about the built form but also about cu­rat­ing the ex­pe­ri­ence. Map­ping out the user jour­ney is in­te­gral to our de­sign process and we strive to cre­ate places that foster mean­ing­ful and in­clu­sive ex­pe­ri­ences. The suc­cess of a space is linked to how well it is able to in­spire and en­gage peo­ple, and our gen­er­a­tion is de­sign­ing with this in mind.

What changes have you seen in the de­sign world in your time at the B+H Dubai stu­dio?

We’re see­ing how the bound­aries of the de­sign pro­fes­sion are ex­pand­ing and blur­ring. Col­lab­o­ra­tion with other dis­ci­plines and de­sign­ers is re­ally at the core of de­liv­er­ing out­stand­ing ex­pe­ri­ences and mean­ing­ful place mak­ing. To keep up as top-level ar­chi­tects and ur­ban plan­ners, we need to reach out and ex­plore new ap­proaches in or­der to cre­ate bolder and more in­spir­ing places for those that in­habit our build­ings and com­mu­ni­ties.

How do you see your role as up and com­ing lead­ers in the in­dus­try?

As younger ar­chi­tects and de­sign­ers come into more se­nior po­si­tions, we’re help­ing our clients nav­i­gate the changes that have come about in the last gen­er­a­tion. It’s our re­spon­si­bil­ity to lead and ed­u­cate our clients to go be­yond the ob­vi­ous and be more ad­ven­tur­ous – to be bold and in­no­va­tive. De­sign­ing with the user ex­pe­ri­ence in mind is a trans­for­ma­tive tool for bridg­ing brands and places with their core mar­ket. It’s a way to mold or­di­nary places into ex­tra­or­di­nary ex­pe­ri­ences. We strive to be adapt­able in our de­signs in or­der to re­spond to the rapidly shift­ing en­vi­ron­ment of to­day’s times. At B+H we live to de­sign bold and in­spir­ing spa­ces for peo­ple.

Ni­cholas Kis­sane, se­nior as­so­ciate and project di­rec­tor, and Tanya Mur­ray, de­sign man­ager and ur­ban plan­ning project man­ager, at B+H Ar­chi­tects, Dubai Stu­dio.

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