Jury President: East Centric Arhitext Awards | Marc Jay (DK)

The 3rd edition of the Bucharest Triennale East Centric Architecture will take place in October, 7th-20th, 2019. The Triennale is organised by the Arhitext Design Foundation, editor of the Arhitext magazine, in partnership with the Romanian

The 3rd edition of the Bucharest Triennale East Centric Architecture will take place in October, 7th-20th, 2019. The Triennale is organised by the Arhitext Design Foundation, editor of the Arhitext magazine, in partnership with the Romanian Order of Architects, the Ion Mincu University of Architecture and Urbanism, the Union of Romanian Architects and the Brâncovan Palaces Cultural Center of Mogoșoaia. The main topic of this edition, HOME|any|more|?, proposes an interrogative approach of the possibility of being at home in today’s world.

The Jury President of the East Centric Arhitext Awards (ECAA), Marc Jay, founder of We Architecture, is one of the main speakers of the Bucharest Triennale. We invite you to read his thoughts about home below: 


Architects should tell the story of home


Within the geographic and urban planning sciences, space and place are considered significant and separate concepts that can be used to describe the feeling of home. While space is an abstract concept, without any substantial meaning, place refers to how people are aware of and are attracted to a certain piece of space. A place is therefore a space, but with meaning. Our home is often the most substantial of places; synonymous with shelter, memories and strong emotional attachment. A home can be many things – a house, a hometown, a home region or a home country.

Technological advances and the derivative globalisation within the past decades have, in many ways, redefined our understanding of the world. We travel the world at a frequency that was unseen just 20 years ago. You could argue that globalisation has made the world our home. The massive influx of technological and cultural data has made an impact on how urban planning and architecture is developing. It is evident that it is now increasingly characterised by global tendencies.

We are experiencing the social media effect also within the field of architecture, creating an “archdaily era”, where landmarks and iconic architecture is spreading fast. Trends within urbanism are copied and the formal expressions of buildings are becoming increasingly similar from country to country. Copenhagen, Paris and Madrid have never looked more alike; we all want the next Guggenheim and have the same high-street shops on our boulevards like H&M and Zara.

As architects and urban planners, it is our duty to contribute with a positive storytelling of our countries, regions, cities and areas. We have a great responsibility of interpreting the modern technological and architectural tendencies of the global development into site-specific projects, incorporating local character and history. It is essential that we do not dilute our local identity in the quest of achieving a hyper modern city competing with other similar cities in a global race. Instead, we should create a carefully human made landscape that, on one hand, is inspired by the global knowledge and tendencies, but at the same time emphasizes the uniqueness of the place giving it identity and story. As architects and planners, we are storytellers and the buildings and cities we develop should tell the story of our past – making it “home” by drawing on collective memory, and not another copy-paste of how the rest of the world is looking.



Marc Jay is a founding partner and owner of WE Achitecture in Copenhagen. He graduated from The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, School of Architecture in 2005 where he received the Barcelona peirs – icopal prize, for his final exam. Following the completion of his degree, Marc worked as a competition architect at Carmen Pinos in Barcelona. Upon leaving, he started working at Bjarke Ingles Group (BIG) in Copenhagen. Here, Marc worked as a project manager in the competition department for 2 years whilst fulfilling a management role as a member of the management team for the office. In 2009, he started the practice WE Architecture, with Julie Schmidt-Nielsen. The vision behind WE is to build landmark architecture that innovates and supports the framework of the community, where interaction between people is at the core, whilst also striving to lift the level of ambition for iconic and visionary buildings. The practice has in recent years, won a number of significant prizes for both competitions and smaller projects. Marc works uncompromisingly as a designer, and oversees the office’s day-to-day projects as the company’s creative director. He is the project and design manager for all the projects at WE – everything from private villas and luxury cottages, to a wide array of larger public works and multi residential developments. Aside from managing his private practice, Marc also lectures and runs workshops world wide.


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