As a young man of eighteen he made a drawing of a drawing table, with the drawing of the skyscraper that could be seen through the window behind the drawing table. His choice of that XXL building makes him laugh now, but his fascination for the design of the environment in which people live is as ardent as it was then. So it’s no surprise that he attended Delft University of Technology.
‘That people all over the world build the cities where they live, all those different, enormous buildings, I still find that magnificent. What many people call ugly architecture is often still moving and exciting in my view. So what’s so fascinating about mountains? I have a similar reaction to cities.’
He did a master’s in architectural engineering and then went to Shanghai, where he designed schools, opera houses and stadiums at a French-Chinese architecture bureau. Covid-19 and the repetition that crept into the work prompted him to move back to the Netherlands after three years, with his Chinese girlfriend.
ZJA offers him an exceptionally pleasant working atmosphere, he says, and he’s attracted by its vision of parametric design. In response to the question of what he does in his free time he’s perfectly candid:
‘Drink beer with friends and learn new things, especially in the fields of technology and art history. I had a sideline as an architecture guide for a while, and I want to do that again in the weekends in Amsterdam. I don’t know the first thing about Amsterdam, but I can learn. It’s such fun to learn to read a city, from building to building.’