From 1993 until 1999, we surveyed buildings that were slated for renovation, creating measured drawings for other architects to base their plans on.

Primarily located in former east Berlin, these projects ranged in size from run down ruins to inhabited small single dwellings to large subdivisions with several hundred apartments.

During this time we entered thousands of people’s most intimate spaces. They belonged to all income and educational backgrounds, and each one was different. In many cases we would visit completely different worlds harbored by apartments with exactly the same floor plan.

In these spaces, we witnessed the power of peoples creativity applied with the aim of realising their vision of home. It wasn’t always pretty, but it was real.

It became clear to us that cities lived from the diversity that arose when people took charge of their own space.

It made intuitive sense to us that our expertise as architect could not replace or overwrite an individuals personal drive to define their lives through space, without immediately loosing the visceral authenticity that came from peoples own impulse to create their surroundings.

Despite this, we saw that our expertise meant that we could help others to better articulate this impulse.

Since then our goal has been to find ways to channel this creative individual energy into architectural expression.

How can we work together with people to create an inspiring, useful, and distinctive building, neighbourhood, and city?