We’d like to take the opportunity to introduce you to the Honorable mention winners of our "Underbridge" competition – Dillon Michael Marlow and Luca Gerard Viverito from United States!

Dillon Michael Marlow and Luca Gerard Viverito

Please tell us about your company (when it was founded, where it is based, how many employees, etc) Alternatively, if you do not have a company, please give us some insights on your own professional/academia background.

We are not a company per se, although we’ve had a strong working relationship since college. While both attending Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, we approached our undergraduate theses as partners, developing similar tastes in design and pedagogy. Professionally, Luca works in residential, institutional, and educational spheres in the American Mountain West. Dillon is one half of the Brooklyn based design duo le-low, a practice dedicated to bringing equitable architecture to small businesses and local communities, bridging the gap between technology and sustainable handcrafted design.

Brief information about the projects that you/your company have been involved with. For instance, what scale have you focused on/preferred, any significant projects where the company/ individuals have been Involved?

Since graduating, Luca assisted the design and proposal of a master plan for new community development in a low-income district of Barcelona, Spain with international firm KnitKnot. He approached this project with a passion for both material and social sustainability, which continues into his professional work. Luca’s appreciation for engaged design at every scale was on display here, from drafting framing assemblies, to organizing gathering space programs. le_low has worked with many small businesses in their local NYC community, giving mindful, curated, design opportunities to those with limited resources. Recently le_low installed the Puzzle Fortress at Taylor & Co. Books in Kensington, Brooklyn, a modular shelving system that encourages young readers to examine how the world is built around them. They also completed the design and build of BikePort, a hub for local cyclists made from repurposed sails and shipping containers. Their work explores the fusion of computer-aided fabrication machinery, reclaimed materials, and ensuring everyone has equal access to meticulously curated craftsmanship. 

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

We believe architecture is the stuff dreams are made of - literally. As architects and designers, we are the creative conduit for unrealized ideas and forms. The task of the architect is the translation and definition of raw ideas into shelter, utility, and beauty. In this way, architecture, as a product and a practice, is the backbone of our society.

Why do you participate in architecture competitions?

We participate in architecture competitions because we are proud of our work. In school and post-graduation, we’ve designed projects defined by public service and community remediation. We feel this is the ultimate duty of the architect, beyond the niche and aesthetic. Herein, we want to share this work with our peers and inspire those with these creative skills to design generously.

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

We believe it is beneficial to participate in architecture competitions and encourage those who are struggling to decide whether they should, because they make us better architects. The spirit of competition and working towards a single goal knits a fabric of pure inspiration, from which we may create our best work. While it may be daunting to put yourself and your work out there, the worst that can happen is you’ve had a chance to practice, and the best that can happen is you win!

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