Eliza Yokina


  • How would you introduce yourself to strangers?

In search of beauty, of emotion, of a world seen through architecture, design, objects and more.

  • What made you choose architecture as a profession?

When I chose to come to Romania for my architecture study I knew nothing about what I was going to do, architecture was for me at that time one of the arts, I was fascinated of the beautiful houses on the street and that’s about it. I studied painting for a few years, architecture was at that time an acceptable compromise, an incidence, a chance to flee from the beautiful and provincial hometown – Vidin. I fell in love with architecture since my first year of study, and I was fascinated of the world that opened in front of me through architecture. A fascination that never ended until this day, an area which continues to surprise me and to ofer joy, to trouble me.

  • How has architecture influenced you personal development?

Genetically speaking, an architect during his training, learns first and foremost to manage a project or an issue, from the stage of anticipation or idea to solving or embodiment by synthesizing a variety of factors, problems, constraints, ideas etc. following a consistency of the process.In this sense, an architect can work in areas not directly related to architecture in that one is able to manage a project from begining to end. An architect has, primarily, a proactive way of thinking, anticipating and taking decisions in the right direction, has a vivid sense of observation, can analyse and synthesize, has a well developed creativity and has in hand effective ways of expression. In many cases, the architect has an importan esthetic education, coupled with a pragmatic sense. In my case, architecture brought, I hope, more discipline and logic in thought and practice, then the science of which I was talking, of making things, of making these happen – a long process which combines a lot of other skills.

  • How would you describe your alternative activity to people unfamiliar with it?

My activity is not really alternative, though it might seem so. Even since the beging of my studies I was debateing with my coleagues that architecture is not a subject dedicated to academic studies, it offers much more as a discipline, but also in practice, it helps us to better understand the constructed world in which we live, so it is so it is incomprehensible that it does not exist in schools as part of the background knowledge, as it is literature, mathematics, logic, geography. Why is architecture considered a special discipline, distant, elitistic, when it can synthetise the majority of disciplines which and it can offer a very efficiant method of imprinting the knowledge recieved from other subjects, in addition to offering very much in terms of culture. The first time I approached the subject more seriously was in play, I wrote a children’s book (especially for my daughter which was yet to be born) with stories about houses (Vise Despre Case, 2011). Recently, I had the chance, together with 5 other coleagues, to start a project which is called De-a Arhitectura, through which we we intend to bring architecture in the background knowledge of children through education more specifically, to bring architecture in the schools. After three years of work and enthusiastic support from the professional community, I succeeded in making an elective course approved by the Ministry of Education for grades III-IV, and we are working at several other projects for other ages.

  • How has the transition from architecture to your alternative activity occurred?How do the two activities influence each other?

Architecture is not just a set of projects that we practice at the office. If you look at it from afar, architecture seems to be a culture of building or a built culture, so, the activity of an architect is not limited to design, but also implies the promotion of values of the built environment further on by various means, one of which can be education. When you are an architect, through the nature of the profession, you feel a great responsibility for nature, the city and people, this responsibility is not just for the architect, but of all who are part of the process of inhabiting and urbanizing Earth, how, why, in what way, are questions that concern us and it’s nice when these issues concern the more people, it is the only way we can increase the value of the built environment.

  • To what degree are you present in each of the activities?