We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the winners of the Honorable mention of our “Pape Bird Observation Tower” competition - Weronika Kogut and Karolina Toporkiewicz from Poland!

Weronika Kogut and Karolina Toporkiewicz from Poland

We are a team formed from recently graduated architects, currently living in Wroclaw. We have known each other for 15 years and we’ve always shared common interest but we chose different academic paths.

Karolina started her career studying Landscape Architecture at Cracow University of Technology, afterward she graduated with a Master’s of Architecture and Urban Planning from Wroclaw University of Technology. She has spent part of her studies on student exchanges in Università degli Studi di Pavia and Universidad del País Vasco. Her final thesis focused on the topic connected to the improvement of the quality of life in less-developed countries, mainly in Africa. She tries to solve needs and issues of various social groups by using architecture.

Weronika studied Architecture and Urban Planning at Cracow University of Technology. She also took part in a student exchange and spent a part of her career at Universidad de Alicante. The subject of her interest is related to the reuse and restoration of old buildings, designing in historical, already defined environments. In her projects she focuses on finding the relationship with the architectural context and tries to find a new composition in the existing background.

We had the opportunity to work together in an architectural office for a few months- where we designed a business incubator and library inside the abandoned buildings from 17th century on Lower Silesia. Our cooperation turned out to be very beneficial and that was the crucial factor for why we should join up our potential more often.

What does architecture mean to you and what is the role of an architect in your society?

Architecture is a response to the needs of people, sometimes many needs simultaneously. This is a little bit like solving an equation with multiple good choices. The advisability of the solution is also very subjective. Moreover, the role of the architect aims to listen and analyze needs in order to create the best possible space which will complement the one that already exists.

Why do you participate in architecture vision competitions?

We participate in architectural competitions because we want to exchange experience and knowledge which we've gained on our education and professional paths in a challenging way. We spend free time with a common passion, we do not only enjoy our time but also develop crucial skills like creative thinking.

What advice would you give to individuals who struggle to decide whether it would be beneficial for them to participate in architecture vision competitions?

Taking part in architecture competitions is a perfect way of self development. If the topic is related to your interests, the process of analyzing the competition subject, finding and presenting solutions is extremely satisfying. This can even be addictive.

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