Victor Vasilev, architect, Milan.

Hello Victor Vasilev, how are you?

Alive and kicking!

Can you introduce yourself?

I was born in Plovdiv / Bulgaria in a Jewish family. We moved to Israel after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1990. At the age of 21, I decided to learn Italian and study architecture in Milan.

Italy had a huge positive impact on me, so after graduating in 2002 I decided to stay. My first client came in 2004 and this gave me the motivation to try my luck and start an independent practice.

Where does your interest in architecture and design come from?

Back in Bulgaria, my family had a friend who was an architect and I was always fascinated by the models and drawings in his office. It sounds naïve but that dream persisted and I decided to follow it all the way through.

Are product design and architecture the same kind of working process/approach?

I believe that the starting point is common but the process of developing the idea is completely different. Inspiration gets you started, but when you think of an object the problem of context doesn’t exist. The great icons of contemporary design like the Castiglioni lamps for Flos fit perfectly in very different spaces – from a Venetian palace to a New York loft. A building has to consider its surroundings from the very beginning. I cannot imagine the project of P. Zumthor in Vals away from the beautiful mountains, which surround it.

Can you tell us more about your CTline project?

This project was conceived as a library but later it evolved and became a multipurpose accommodating system. Designing an object like this is very different from working on any other piece of furniture. I wanted to create a sort of domestic architecture. The client’s home should become the context and the product has to adapt to it and express the hidden potential of the interior.

I am in love with pure minimalistic space, but we are all aware of the fact that our home is ‘invaded’ by all sorts of objects every day. We are ‘drowning’ in books, magazines, DVD’s and all sorts of electronic gadgets. This product will offer space for all this stuff, using a combination of 6 columns, inspired by the abstract iconography of modern art. I proposed a couple of ready-made solutions both for the living area and for the bathroom, but the hope is that each designer will create a different composition for every new client. The chaotic skyline of the city should be the guideline.

What is the project that you done with more pleasure?

Every project has its own story and I enjoy every single moment of it. The biggest satisfaction comes when you see a publication of a nice interior and you discover one of your products in it, chosen by someone who doesn’t know you. This universal appeal of an idea has a really positive effect on me.

Is there any designer or movement you appreciate a lot?

Vico Magistretti is my all time favorite. He had the ability to create timeless masterpieces both in the fields of architecture and product design.

Where do you find your inspirations?

I am in love with the creations of Richard Serra, Sol LeWitt and James Turrell.

Which books are on your bedside tables?

My latest acquisition is a book about the work of Glenn Murcutt. I had the chance to listen to his lecture in Copenhagen back in 2000 and the latest monograph by El Croquis is really well done.

The last word…

I repeat to myself quite often: ‘ You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, well you might find, you get what you need. ‘ I have to admit that I am a big Rolling Stones fan.

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>   victorvasilev.com

Interview : Tiffany Baehler & Dennis Moya – 11.14