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David Strębicki on favorite books about architecture and more

30 of April '20

"10 Questions to..." is a series of short interviews with architects and female architects, to whom we address the same pool of questions. In today's installment of the mini-interview, Dawid Strębicki of Atelier Starzak Strebicki answers our questions.

Dawid Strębicki studied at the Faculties of Architecture in Tilburg, Delft University of Technology and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen. He gained professional experience in London, Rotterdam, Copenhagen and Ghent. Since 2012 he has co-founded the architectural studio Atelier Starzak Strebicki, and since 2019 he has been working as an academic teacher in the Urban Management course at Collegium Da Vinci in Poznań.

1. architecture in three words...?

a. Culture of space.
b. The art of building.
c. Scenography of everyday life.

2: The three most important buildings for you...?

For ease, I will stay with Mies van der Rohe's designs:

a. Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin.
b. Haus Tugendhat in Brno.
c. Barcelona Pavilion.

3. the most important book on architecture...?

The most memorable to me were those read in my student days: "Dead Cities" and "Planet of the Slums" written by Mike Davis and "Warped Space" and "Architectural Uncanny" written by Anthony Vidler. After graduation: "Le Corbusier, Homme de Lettres" by M. Christine Boyer. I look forward to reading the next book from those waiting on the shelf: "X-rayarchitecture" by Beatriz Colomina.

4 Most inspiring city and why...?

Hmmm... I don't know... I'm certainly inspired not only by cities, but also by villages and open landscape. Since living in Poland, what I find fascinating, but at the same time amazing and disturbing, is the centralization of the country (concentration of energy in Warsaw), in relation to the dying out medium-sized cities (such as Konin, Piła, Włocławek, Płock, etc.) while destroying the previously invested capital there, both financial and social.

5. architect with whom you would like to design something and why...?

Of the deceased: Gordon Matta-Clark. Of the living: Francis Alÿs. Both speak with their designs about the transience of space and architecture as a social phenomenon.

6. hand-drawing or computer drawing?

In a way, however, both are more important to me: story, conversation, emotion, mathematics, building scenario and experiencing the material. Drawing is just a tool for communication (internal, with contractors or representational with the client). As an architect, I never knew/learned how to draw by hand, and I last created a computer drawing more than 10 years ago. They are of little importance in the design process itself.

7. mockup or 3D model?

In some ways both, with a tilt toward mockups. The 3D model often disappears with the shutdown of the computer, and walking around the office at my leisure, looking at the mockups, they give me the opportunity to think about the project. The mockups stand in the space of our studio, their presence makes me think about the project. The books on the shelves have the same effect. To this point, I have not been able to build such a relationship with 3D models, whether they are on a computer screen or printed on sheets of paper spread out on a table or hung on a wall.

8 - Modernism or postmodernism?


9. After-hours work or sports?

Don't know.

10. architecture or business?

Architecture to me is Culture, so the question is Culture or Business - probably Cultural Business.

If you have suggestions for questions you would like us to ask, or people of architects whose answers to these questions you would like to know - let us know in the comments.

The vote has already been cast