The Desks of the Architects

 

We went around studio asking architect students about their desk, what makes it special and how they make it their own. Get behind the mind of a design student and see where it all begins.

 

Rachel, 2nd year architecture

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Why do you organize your workspace the way it’s organized now?

I tend to be very clear headed and I think that’s reflected in my space. I need to have it decluttered in order to process things better and work faster. So it’s kind of about efficiency.

What is one thing on your desk that you love?

That I love and cannot part with? Okay my organ. I’m obsessed with this thing. For one of the buildings I designed, I decided to incorporate wind and sound with it and so I made a wood organ. I’m obsessed with it. Yeah pretty happy with that.

Jamie, 5th year architecture

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What’s the weirdest thing you have on your desk?

Maybe my ostrich pillow. You can stick you head in and then you put your arms through the holes in the side and just lay on top of your desk.

Did you get the coffee machine specifically for this desk?

No, I had it since second year. I got it really cheap in Costco and it practically pay for itself in the first six months and I had it for three years. I have it normally in my apartment but with the second desk I had enough room to put it.

Aayush, 2nd year architecture

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Can you describe your workflow and process?

I’ll start with roll paper and just start making sketches and coming up with iterations of ideas. If I come up with a good idea then I start to develop it and move from one step to the other.

Why do you work on more than one desk?

The guy on my left is never here so I use his desk. The other desk in the end is a common table, so if my desk is full of stuff and I don’t want to move it I just go to the next desk and if I have stuff there, I move to the next one.

Daniel, 3rd year architecture

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What is one thing on your desk that you love?

My lamp. I wanted a really efficient and good-looking lamp, which are not very common to find. So I decided to invest a little more on a nice looking lamp.

What’s the weirdest thing you have on your desk?

Polyurethane. Just chilling there. If I inhale it, I’ll probably die.

Helen, 2nd year architecture

What are three must-have items for your desk? 

I would say a pen, my sketchbook, and tea.

What is one thing on your desk that you love?

My plants. I have an aloe plant and a shamrock right now. These guys ended up here because they weren’t doing so hot at my house. My house is overridden with plants.

Trey, 3rd year architecture

Why do you organize your workspace the way it’s organized now?

[Laughs] Well. I don’t know where to begin. Things...are organized based on how I use them, in the sense that if I’ve been using it recently, it’s in kind-of a pile.

Is it true you made stuff for your desk?

I took a lot of it home actually but I still have my little glue-holder. It’s all sheet metal. I had this [cup holder] last year for paints and stuff. I have a bookshelf. I made the wood part and actually, I found these [concrete slabs] in the dumpster! Somebody just threw them away.

 

Interviews by Alexandra Pena, Chloe Molinos and Jee Yun Kim

Photographs by Chloe Molinos