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Sketchbook: Mina Gospavic

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How are you filling your time during lockdown? The AJ’s Sketchbook series continues, a showcase for architects’ sketches and concept drawings. This week’s sketches are by Mina Gospavic, architect at Coffey Architects

Since I spend most of my time sat at my window – which unfortunately is blocked by the gable end of a another house – I decided to draw a capriccio: a fantasy view of what I’d like to see out of my window during this time. It is a visualisation assembling all the vibrant things that make me happy; elements taken from design and architecture from all over the world, amalgamated into one view. 

Desk photo mina gospavic (1)

Desk photo mina gospavic (1)

I’ve knocked down a row of terraces to include a lido as the centrepiece of the composition with an inflatable flamingo, surrounded by British beach huts and a wave-patterned monochrome floor by Brazilian landscape architect Roberto Burle Marx.

The landscape is rather flat in reality, so I’ve inserted a picturesque Italian hilltop town with some characteristic colonnades and vaulted roofs. A verdant, winding stair similar to the Lyon Street Steps in San Francisco climbs up to the top of the hill, where you’ll find Victoria Park’s Chinese Pagoda (by architect James Pennethorne). From here it is possible to hike up to a magical Mount Fuji, and return by gondola back to north-west London.

Beyond the hills to the right, there is a compressed view from Parliament Hill (with St Paul’s looking a little larger than it normally is), as this is my favourite view of London. 

I think during this time it’s important to give ourselves permission to be playful and to make drawings that leave us feeling happy and optimistic about our future after lockdown. Likewise, this awkward situation gives us the opportunity to observe and pay attention to how we work, and why.

Ho chi minh independence palace vietnam mina gospavic 200402 aj submission

Ho chi minh independence palace vietnam mina gospavic 200402 aj submission

Source: Mina Gospavic

Ho Chi Minh City Independence Palace, Vietnam

Since entering isolation I’ve been looking back at all the places I was lucky to visit and learn from. The skills I have learnt in making travelogues over the years – to work dynamically no matter where I am, to be present and focused in a moment which may be full of distractions – have been invaluable during lockdown. Together, and in isolation, we can practice the ‘dynamic’ in architecture, to consciously appreciate the abundance of resources we have to tease out new ideas, despite the circumstances we find ourselves in.

I will continue to share my travelogues and other drawings throughout lockdown, so if you’d like to share any of your comments or simply join me on a little trip around the world, please follow my Instagram

Share your working-from-home sketches with us on Instagram 
Tag @architectsjournal and use #sketchbook

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