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The Indescribable Role of the Architect - An Interview with Tatiana Bilbao

The Indescribable Role of the Architect - An Interview with Tatiana Bilbao by Ángel Bolaños and Ana Sofia Outor

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What is the role of the architect today? What should we dedicate ourselves to, where should we put our focus on?

Tatiana Bilbao's work has found a niche of versatility that allows her to explore different, even contrasting, facets of architecture, thus managing to question in the process the role of the architect in today's society and its important role in the construction of a material environment that we will all inhabit in constant interaction during the creation of community.

The paths in the architecture career are divergent and the eternal debate about the role of the architect is present when we understand that perhaps our most important role is not to create “beauty” and build monuments but to offer services, to offer guidance and leadership. To offer people the tools to find freedom in the processes of constructing the environment they will inhabit.

During the interview with the architect Bilbao within the “Architecture for Humanity” course, we had the opportunity to ask her about this topic and learn about her opinion and approach to finding a role in this diverse profession.

— Should we be technical advisors, should we design programs, should we design strategies?
— The role of the architects should be part of the society, to be part of the process of the built environment as architecture is a basic need for everyone. The society builds the environment together, in communal harmony, and that has been the process since the origin of civilizations. The role of the architect is to help build that much more consciously and more profoundly in constant collaboration, we should be part of and even lead these processes of building the environment we live in. 

Architects should be part of the world and should organize, promote, and enable processes so all of us can build together this world.

The conversation concluded with a hopeful: “I’m still trying to find my role”. And in the same way as Tatiana, all architects will find themselves in that search for what our profession means, finding in the process a way to offer humanity a meaningful service. 

Tatiana Bilbao 6
“I don’t do aesthetical objects, I care about the story”

Tatiana Bilbao designs a building of “unknown typology” on the shore of the Sea of Cortez that will become an aquarium when the sea floods the earth in the year 2100 and that will be discovered again in the year 2289, when marine life has taken over. 

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