Alessandro Isola Ltd is an Italian architectural company based in London, founded by the architect of the same name. As described on his website:
You will find Alessandro wearing black and a scarf. Always.
Drinking espresso and being ‘Italian’. He draws inspiration from his life experiences as a successful dancer.
Of course we wanted to have a chat with this versatile individual. And discover more about his life and work as an Italian creative in the UK. Scroll down to read the interview!
Please introduce yourself with one sentence, who is ‘Alessandro Isola’?
I feel I am a psychologist as much as an Architect. I like to read people, I observe, listen and explore.
Can you tell us a little bit about your latest project?
From a baseball hat collection to furniture pieces for art galleries, to bigger residential interior spaces in St.Moritz, Moscow, Italy, US, and the UK.
In all projects, small or big in scale, the focus is to evoke wonderment and awe. I hope to inspire the viewers and the users, make them question their assumptions about how things are and elevate their awareness of how things can change and be different from what we are used to.
A space or an object are not always what they first appear and I do try to challenge perception of spaces and objects creating an unexpected reaction. And the surprise factor is always accompanied by profound attention to detail and functionality.
Finding the inspiration: can you briefly tell us about the process?
I find inspiration in the small things of daily life. They can be random, unnoticed or even annoying yet powerful enough to create interactions between us and feed my imagination. Words, gestures, movements, they are all keys to a design story that I try to interpret and translate into our living environment.
A big source of inspiration are my clients themselves, my design team, the craftsmen, my production and management team. Conversing with them and exchanging ideas elevate the projects to another level.
This connection is very important to me. Clients for example are not just clients, it goes much deeper than this. I cannot explain it in words.
Your favourite architects and designers to be inspired by
I don’t have a favourite architect per se but I am most drawn by individual projects or products that are based on radical transformation, breaking the boundaries and transcending the ordinary.
Example among others are ThomasHeatherwick and Nendo.
Working as an Architect in London. Pros and cons.
Since studying at the Architectural Association in London I have been attracted by London multicultural environment. In fact, I enjoy relating to people with different cultural and social background. London exposure to new places, new shops, new restaurants, theatre plays, keep me mentally alive.
London though is a very fast speed and dynamic environment and sometimes this can be overwhelming and very often I crave quietness, silence and stillness so maybe we will bump into each other during my lonely strolls or in a yoga class.
Working as an Italian Architect abroad. Do you love to add an Italian touch in your projects? If yes, how?
Yes, Craftsmanship and experimentation. All done with passion and a smile….while having an espresso of course! 🙂
Thank you Alessandro, it was a pleasure to meet you!
*All images © Alessandro Isola LTD