Selçuk Avcı: We adopt a special, contemporary and holistic approach to the project.

Selçuk Avcı: We adopt a special, contemporary and holistic approach to the project.

Speaking to the Construction World, Avcı Architects Founder Selçuk Avcı said, “The holistic design idea is one of the cornerstones of our practice. “We see every new design problem in architecture as an opportunity for innovation, and we even think that real architecture cannot exist without innovation.”


Could we learn about the values and details that brought Avcı Architects, whose journey in the world of design started 32 years ago in London and has been growing, to this day? What is the focus of your architectural production approach?

We were established in the UK in 1989 as an architecture office. We have never compromised our insistence on design and concept quality from day one. For us, design is a layering process. The emergence of a solution is based on understanding and rapport with the issues surrounding the project. We try to get down to the DNA of the issue, avoiding stereotypes. This is what excites us …

We consider every project we deal with as a unique opportunity, try to prioritize the principles of sustainability in each project, and open the sine qua non of the work to the discussion at first. This can sometimes be an approach to social-cultural balance, sometimes a relationship with nature, sometimes an idea that affects energy consumption and of course carbon emissions. While attempting to build a beautiful building, we do whatever we can to balance the potential relationship of this building with nature and its impact on the supernatural. One of the most important factors of this is that the materials used in the building are locally sourced as much as possible and the energy needs are minimized. Our design approach is project-specific, contemporary, and holistic. First of all, we set out with the desire to understand the region we designed, the people, the culture of the country and of course the wishes of our customers. We see every new design problem in architecture as an opportunity for innovation. Because every new project; is a combination of unique components such as climate, culture, people, economy, society, eco-system, and history. Each of these also adds possibilities and potentials. We can even say that real architecture cannot exist without innovation.

Avciarchitects TMB

Avciarchitects TMB

You prioritize the holistic design idea. Could you please share the importance of this approach and what it adds to design?

Yes, the holistic design idea is one of the cornerstones of our practice. In fact, this is one of the points that separate us from other architecture firms in Turkey. Today, many architects and engineers work for different and qualified features. However, considering their working style or habits, perhaps 5-10% of architects-engineers work with the approach that interests us. I think the definition of this approach is “holistic” or integrated design… Integrated design, which we think is very important for Turkey; expresses a versatile way of thinking that brings together all technical, artistic and structural information. Masters such as Michelangelo, Mimar Sinan, and Leonardo da Vinci were actually doing integrated designs. Because there was only one name who undertook the architecture and engineering on the one hand. There are no analogs of such names in our age because the structure is now too complicated to compare with the past. A building has many different dimensions such as its mechanics, electricity, technology, lighting design. It is impossible for a single person to have the same command of knowledge in all these areas and to be creative. The most competent experts need to come together, team up and think together. In doing so, we, as architects, must act not like the dictators of the design team, but as a conductor, bringing together the creative expertise of the entire team. This is what we call integrated design.

In which geographies, what kind of projects make you happy to produce?

As an architect, I enjoy working all over the world, I cannot speak of an exception. Instead of choosing a project type, I prefer to work with employers who have a similarly holistic approach and want to appreciate the quality of our thinking and value this thought.

You can access the full interview at here.

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