Interview with Architect Antonio Martínez

“You think, you have an idea, and you design”
Antonio Martínez was born in Granada en 1975, graduated at the University of Granada School of Architecture and since 2001 has worked from his professional studio in Malaga. He is currently writing a doctoral thesis in Architecture and studying Spanish Language and Literature. This summer he is going to publish his first book of short stories.
Do you think that Spain today dominates world architectural culture?
Spain has shown examples of the international standing of its architects. Architects such as Moneo, Ábalos, Mangado and Zaera, among others, are winning international competitions and are recognised on an international level. 


Which city has most understood the coexistence between architecture and nature? And why?
In this respect, there are several ways of understanding this coexistence. A healthy coexistence between architecture and nature are always noticed when green and urban merge, such as New York Central Park, a large separate green area within the city. It allows citizens to access this big park without having to travel to the outskirts of town. Also there is the classic idea of the garden city, where the alliance between the city and nature is most obvious.These days there is a way of respecting nature in a clear and simple manner, and that is through environmental policies. A striking example is the industrial city of Hamburg, which approved a climate protection programme in 2007, with four hundred points to make it a reality, and an annual investment of 23 million euros to bring it about. This programme for example controls carbon dioxide emissions from public transport and vehicle access to certain areas of the city, etc


What is your vision regarding architecture of the future?
Current architecture has entered into a mannerist and exhibitionist spiral, making it difficult for everyone else to understand. Technological directions, structural displays etc. make construction like juggling, machines obsessed with sustainability, but based on machinery and facilities that don’t generate much pollution, but do generate pollution in their construction process. To give an example, a solar panel is made from components that have been constructed using highly polluting manufacturing processes which make the panels somewhat incongruous. This is all very well explained in a book titled Cradle to cradle.
There is a type of architecture that uses passive comfort conditioning systems with more efficient (and not necessarily technological) architectural designs.


What are you working on at the moment?
We’re currently working on a number of projects in France: a 100 room hotel in Chatourroux; a development with 26 singlefamily homes in Poligny Notre Dame; the refurbishment of the Les Dryades hotel, also in Poligny Notre Dame, and a municipal golf clubhouse that we won through a competition in l’Indre. In Spain we’re carrying out various partial plans in the province of Málaga, single-family homes in Marbella, Rincón de la Victoria and Málaga, and various industrial projects, also in Málaga.


An architect that you admire
Rafael Moeno without doubt, both for his projects and his way of thinking, but also others such as Antón García Abril, Fernando Menis and the Portuguese architects Álvaro Siza and Souto de Moura.

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