Notes from The Architect Episode 2: Weaving Ideas Into A Coherent Learning Space with Jason Buensalido

July 18, 2023



Rick Formalejo

The second episode of Notes from The Architect features Architect Jason Buensalido, Chief Design Ambassador of Buensalido Architects and Barchan Architecture and Design, as he walks us through the design of CIIT College of Arts and Technology also known as The Interweave. The project is an adaptive reuse project wherein Buensalido’s team had to reuse and retrofit an existing building, as well as, add a few more stories.

The Interweave Building’s second skin was inspired by indigenous weaving patterns such as Maguindanoan, T’boli, and Yakan, to name a few. “We studied commonalities between them such as patterns, shapes, use of colors, edges, transitional strategies, and boundary elements; and through an iterative process, these were then abstracted into more architectonic intricacies and scale,” explained Buensalido + Architects.

The brief was to create a built environment that communicates the school’s values. Upon working on the project, Buensalido and his team realized that CIIT aims to be at the forefront of the intersection of arts and technology. The clients wanted to express their ethos of sustainability and show their pride as a 100 percent Filipino company through the identity of the building.

In this episode, Buensalido talks about how he combined those ideas and juxtaposed them into a second skin that the design firm introduced to address temperature issues brought by the building’s initial design. The overall design also aims to give a little leeway for the users to make the building their own. 

Related Read: Navigating Philippine Architecture One Detail at A Time

“A lot of the interior surfaces of the building, we left it blank. And we intentionally did so because we wanted the owners, the clients, and the people running the building to hold periodic competitions. Every year, whenever we visit the building, the artworks that adorn the walls would change. So much so that instilled a high sense of pride and ownership,” Buensalido explains.

Several factors have challenged Buensalido when working on this project, like working on the limitations of the existing building. Despite this, Buensalido and his team work through these challenges and use the resources they have without compromising the quality of work. 

“Though we are asked to come up with architecture through our projects, I think it’s always good to think beyond the architecture itself, how the architecture will relate to its community, how it will be of use to its community not only to its immediate users, right, but also to the immediate vicinity that it exists in. Perhaps to the metro or how it would perhaps influence the country,” Buensalido shares. 

Learn how Jason Buensalido weaved multiple ideas in designing the CIIT College of Arts and Technology building on Notes from The Architect.

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