New practices: LASSA
The latest in a series of practice profiles looking at architects who have recently decided to go it alone either through choice or redundancy
LASSA, London, N7
Main people: Dora Sweijd and Theo Sarantoglou Lalis
Founded: August 2012
Where have you come from?
Sweijd worked at Foster + Partners and at REX in New York. Sarantoglou Lalis held project director positions at Future Systems and Asymptote Architecture in New York. Since 2009, we have been teaching Diploma Unit 17 at the Architecture Association.
What work do you have?
We are focusing on a hotel tower in China, an office complex in Kuwait and smaller projects, such as a house (pictured) in Greece, which starts on site next month.
What are your ambitions?
We have a team of 10 people, but we are being considered for commissions in Asia, which would rapidly bring the office up to 25 staff. In the first decade, we would like to keep the office under 60 people so we can keep consistent editorial control over design, avoiding specialisation of our team and too much hierarchy in the office.
How optimistic are you as a start-up practice?
We have grown at a steady pace and have been joined by some of the most talented young architects from the top architecture schools in the world. Our experience allows us to be shortlisted and compete against much larger firms.
How do you market yourself?
We have primarily disseminated our work through lectures, but we are now at a stage where our portfolio and projects going to site will gain us more visibility.