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Interview with Polina Nozdracheva

Home > Designer Interviews > Polina Nozdracheva

Editor Frank Scott (FS) from DesignPRWire has interviewed designer Polina Nozdracheva (PN) for A’ Design Award and Competition. You can access the full profile of Polina Nozdracheva by clicking here.

Interview with Polina Nozdracheva at Tuesday 24th of November 2020
Polina Nozdracheva
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?
PN: I am from architectural family. And so it was no hesitations about future profession. My favorite pastime was playing constructor games. And then - art school, school of architecture, Moscow Architectural Institute, etc.

FS: Can you tell us more about your company / design studio?
PN: Company ALPN Ltd. based in Moscow, Russia. We are working more than 15 years. During this period we have completed more than 100 projects of various functional purposes and sizes (from a small office center and a block of townhouses to the reconstruction of residential areas and industrial facilities). We like to create our projects from just beginning till the final result Many of these projects are already built or are in the process of construction.

FS: What is "design" for you?
PN: Architecture or design is a very amazing and mysterious process for me, where using the knowledge of many specialists and engineers created a living organism, which is designed to be comfortable, functional and to serve the human being. And the conductor of the orchestra of specialists - the architect, who is responsible for beauty, aesthetics and the final result.

FS: What kinds of works do you like designing most?
PN: I like it when we create the object from the very beginning, i.e. from urban design vision. When already at the first sketch "tab of the" basic concept, which gradually takes form, grows out of the existing urban structure in a separate element. For me, urban design and architecture are inseparable, because only in this case it is possible to create an architectural object, which will become the part of the urban space.

FS: What is your most favorite design, could you please tell more about it?
PN: Each new project is special. There is nothing that this project is more favorite and the other one does not in the process. The project idea germinates in the mind, there is an image, then this image appears on the paper, then drawings, designs, engineering sections, approvals, construction, etc. It's not a quick process, sometimes it takes a few years. Each project is like a child that must first be carried out, given birth, raised, raised and released. Each of the project is like a child, which is necessary to carry, deliver, raise and release.

FS: What was the first thing you designed for a company?
PN: Frankly speaking I do not remember. We work simultaneously with several projects in various stages of design. In my opinion, it was the urban planning concept of reconstruction.

FS: What is your favorite material / platform / technology?
PN: I like to play with wood and brick. I like to combine these materials with large areas of glazing. Also, I really like to fit the object into an existing environment, saving intact the maximum natural elements to the proposed facility was seen as a part of the natural environment.

FS: When do you feel the most creative?
PN: Each stage of the project is creative. Even with the development of working documentation on engineering topics requires a creative approach. But, of course, at the beginning of a long journey on the project, the creativity is maximum and it is more fantastic and magic process.

FS: Which aspects of a design do you focus more during designing?
PN: I can answer on this question just using the words of Vitruvius: utility, durability, beauty.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when you design?
PN: The excitement.

FS: What kind of emotions do you feel when your designs are realized?
PN: Of course, the greatest pleasure if everything have done right, and the really is as the same as the project. Hereinafter, the fatigue, and then some devastation. But, in any case, there is a period we have such moment, between projects. A little sadness has passed very quickly and only the desire to observe the life of our project remains.

FS: What makes a design successful?
PN: Literacy and professionalism.

FS: When judging a design as good or bad, which aspects do you consider first?
PN: The functionality and the correct attitude to the already established urban environment are the main positive points in the architectural design.

FS: From your point of view, what are the responsibilities of a designer for society and environment?
PN: It seems to me that the profession of an architect is similar to the medical profession. Both a doctor and an architect are professions that are responsible for human life, only in different aspects.

FS: How do you think the "design field" is evolving? What is the future of design?
PN: Of course the profession of the architect is evolving. The future of architecture depends on advanced technology and new materials.

FS: When was your last exhibition and where was it? And when do you want to hold your next exhibition?
PN: The recent exhibition was on November, 11-13, 2020 for the International Architectural Academy. The next ones is up to demand.

FS: Where does the design inspiration for your works come from? How do you feed your creativity? What are your sources of inspirations?
PN: The best sources of inspiration are our environment and nature. We should be just very observant.

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?
PN: The style of my work is to be friendly to the environment and to society and observe all the colors of the environment.

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?
PN: I'm from Moscow, Russia. And of course, the Russian architectural school of has a very rich heritage. Naturally, such a historical baggage, such as the Russian vanguard, constructivism and futurism, are having a profound impact on our projects.

FS: How do you work with companies?
PN: The company ALPN Ltd. performs design documentation in full (this and urban sections, and architectural, constructive and engineering and special sections of project documentation). But, if necessary, we work with other companies as part of contractual obligations.

FS: What are your suggestions to companies for working with a designer? How can companies select a good designer?
PN: High professionalism, international level and obligation of respecting precious client's resources characterize our methods most closely with knowledgeable clients.

FS: Can you talk a little about your design process?
PN: The design is very mysterious and the fantastic process. These two words even can't describe this process.

FS: What are 5 of your favorite design items at home?
PN: There are no such items. Probably, if we talk about the building as a whole, I love the input space, as it is the connecting element between the exterior and interior. And so, very important for me - the ergonomics of the space, functionalism and sustainability.

FS: Can you describe a day in your life?
PN: Every day is so different that it is rather difficult beyond description. A clear daily routine will never exist. Having an understanding of office work, but always show the progress in connection with meetings, negotiations, business trips and construction processes.

FS: Could you please share some pearls of wisdom for young designers? What are your suggestions to young, up and coming designers?
PN: You should work as much as you can. A lot to study, constantly to watch. The architect's profession is the one profession where you have to learn constantly. There is no such that you got education and all my life to use the acquired knowledge. Modern life is such that there is a lot of new materials and technologies. But the most important is the respect for architectural work and diligence.

FS: From your perspective, what would you say are some positives and negatives of being a designer?
PN: You are in this work all the time, during day and night, everywhere (watching TV, meeting with friends...). If you're on some kind of project; you're always involved in this process. I don't know - is it negative or positive for life? For me - it is my life.

FS: What is your "golden rule" in design?
PN: To be free.

FS: What skills are most important for a designer?
PN: There are a lot of components. I can't say that such list needs to be that way and no other. For me it is very important feeling of space. Everything should be functional. Each element of the building should be in place and, in any case, not to become simply a decoration.

FS: Which tools do you use during design? What is inside your toolbox? Such as software, application, hardware, books, sources of inspiration etc.?
PN: There are a lot of different computer programs used for design documentation. For engineering sections is autocad, structures analysis - the other program, for presentations and concepts - the other ones. Most importantly, the presence of the knowledge and experience.

FS: Designing can sometimes be a really time consuming task, how do you manage your time?
PN: It is can't be controlled.

FS: How long does it take to design an object from beginning to end?
PN: It is very different. Sometimes it takes a few months, sometimes - a few years. There are no accurate temporal indicators.

FS: What is the most frequently asked question to you, as a designer?
PN: Such issues are several. Mostly: how much it costs to order the project? And could we make a project that will be unique and non-standard?

FS: What was your most important job experience?
PN: The most important experience for the architect is the author's supervision of construction, when all that is conceived and designed on paper comes to life.

FS: Who are some of your clients?
PN: There are completely different clients: government, public, and private.

FS: What type of design work do you enjoy the most and why?
PN: I like to work on multi-functional and urban design projects. The most interesting for me - the totality, from the urban planning concept of the whole object, up to the moment of delivery of object in operation. Then you become the author of the complete legend about the origin of the new urban space component.

FS: What are your future plans? What is next for you?
PN: Architectural projects and construction the interesting buildings.

FS: Do you work as a team, or do you develop your designs yourself?
PN: The general concept and the basic idea - of course it is very individual work. And then, as we develop all the design documentation sections (urban design, architectural, constructive, engineering topics and author's supervision of construction) - it is team works of specialists in different directions.

FS: Do you have any works-in-progress being designed that you would like to talk about?
PN: Yes, there are such projects. We are currently working on two-three objects in parallel. One of them is the object of social purpose for older people, which recently received an expert opinion, building permit design and issued working documentation for construction. Another object is a multifunctional sport complex, where the urban planning concept has been approved and we embarked on the development of the design documentation for construction. Another project is not very big - the reconstruction of facades of administrative buildings, where in this period of time we are preparing project documentation for approval.

FS: How can people contact you?
PN: It is quite elementary. Me and my company are very open. My company has a websites: www.alpn.ru, www.alpn.design. Also we have pages in social networks. We are open for contacts and collaboration.

FS: Any other things you would like to cover that have not been covered in these questions?
PN: Everything is OK.


FS: Thank you for providing us with this opportunity to interview you.

A’ Design Award and Competitions grants rights to press members and bloggers to use parts of this interview. This interview is provided as it is; DesignPRWire and A' Design Award and Competitions cannot be held responsible for the answers given by participating designers.


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