Applied in: Winter 2013

University Offers: Bath, Oxford Brookes

Architecture combines many disciplines, from physics to art, mathematics to history, it relies on the successful integration of a multitude of skills. I’ve enjoyed art since I was a child. My mother taught me how to draw and this grew naturally into looking for art in the buildings around me. Be it the Eiffel Tower in Paris or the Shard in London, I wanted to know more about the entire process of architecture and how such beautiful buildings come to be built.

I find longevity an appealing aspect of architecture. We can build structures that outlast an individual life, and record humanity’s evolving relationship with space. That’s what the Romans gave us, and that’s what we will give to our descendants. For 2,000 years, the Coliseum has stood as a monument to Roman culture, surviving through many centuries of history, which is awe inspiring. Architecture is also a way to explore new materials and to develop strategies that can revolutionize our ways of living. Taking us always further into modernity and the future, it can help to solve global problems such as increasing rates of urbanisation.

This summer, I went to the brand new MuCEM in Marseille, France, created mainly by Rudy Ricciotti and Roland Carta, which was really interesting. It is strategically located in order to evoke a contrast between old and new, being joined by a concrete bridge to the Fort Saint-Jean and standing in front of a fortification of Vauban. Principally, however, the structure of the building embodies this contrast: a new material for the outside “clothing” of the museum, a fishnet of BFUP (high-performance fibre concrete), was developed to protect the exhibitions from the sun. But architecture also has a more human scale, such as the building of houses and other municipal constructions like hospitals and schools. These are buildings that we can call home and that bring us together.

To explore architecture more fully, I visited exhibitions, talks, buildings and museums. Amongst others, I went to a RIBA open house in London, which gave me the opportunity to meet architects and to talk about their career. On top of that, I did an Art and Design course at Central Saint Martins in London and undertook a two week course at London Art Portfolio to improve my creative skills. I have also done work experience at Alice Pool Architects in West London. There I had the chance to work on their computer design software and to go on site to follow the progression from original idea to final construction.

I moved to London from Paris three years ago. This change has given me the chance to see a new culture and country in depth. I am currently at the Lycee Charles de Gaulle in London. I chose the scientific section for my French Baccalaureate, and therefore I am studying many of the subjects that have a bearing on the multidisciplinarity of architecture - I feel the Bac has given me a strong and broad academic foundation from which to explore further.

My experience as babysitter, scout, and even as eldest of four children has helped me to gain a sense of community, and some small retail experience has given me a basic sense of working with a customer’s needs in mind. My hobbies are also a big part of my life. I played basketball last year and I am currently playing volleyball, hoping to make the school team. I also enjoy very much playing tennis and swimming. I have played and studied music since I was 6 years old and was enrolled at the Regional Conservatoire near Paris until the move to London. I have my Grade 8 in piano and am practising many hours a week for the next step, the DispABRSM, which is an advanced music diploma.

I would count it a great achievement if I could continue my studies in the United Kingdom and learn more about such a fascinating topic. I know that Architecture is a demanding course as well as an exciting one and I am willing to rise to it if it means that I will get to do something that I’ll love.

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