— How long do you remember being an architect??

— I have been involved in architectural design since 2002, right after graduating from St. Petersburg University of Architecture and Civil Engineering. You could say that I remember myself as an architect all my conscious life.

— Do you have your own philosophy about the house? What should it be like?

— The house should blend in with its surroundings, be properly planted on the plot and oriented towards the sides of the world. It's good when the proportions are correct.

In general, beauty is perfection in the function which is fulfilled, perfection of expediency, economy of material, strength and speed. This is a quote by Ivan Yefremov. I often refer to it in my work.

But the main thing, of course, the house must please the eye. First and foremost, its owner. When a house is built harmoniously and well, it becomes an educator of the sense of beauty and a role model. Such a house does not cause the desire to reconstruct, and therefore becomes a family pride for several generations.

— How to communicate properly to an architect and a client?

Respectfully and trustingly. To listen. To the architect - to the wishes, taste and budget of the customer. To the customer - the experience and opinion of the architect.

— Why do we have so many ugly private houses? What can we do about it?

— First of all it is due to a mistaken economy on individual projects.

There is still a practice of building without a project under the scheme: "First we do the foundation 10x12, after a while we build a "box", do the interior decoration, and only then, one day we decorate what is outside". Or we take a typical inexpensive project as the basis and during construction we make significant changes. In both cases, the result is an ugly house.

And what to do with it? Design "buildable" houses. After all, a competent project optimizes the cost of construction, decoration and operation, and usually pays for itself in full, avoiding frustrating mistakes and costly alterations.

Design the facades of houses that have already been built. Thoughtful finishing will hide the flaws and emphasize the advantages of any house, decorate the lives of owners and inspire neighbors to the feats of decorating their homes.

— What mistakes do architects make?

— I do not like contrived solutions "for beauty", I believe that the form should follow the function. There's no such thing as "not convenient, but beautiful.

In the same way, the eye is attracted to excessive or inappropriate decorations. Windows - the eyes of the house, it makes sense to emphasize their decor, choose a successful eaves roof, spectacular wall color and trim plinth. Often this is enough to make the house sparkle. I always give preference to good-quality, if possible natural materials, because inexpensive imitations greatly spoil the appearance.

— Are there any styles that you can't do now?

— You can reproduce any style in its pure form or use some of its elements. "Stylish house" and "house built in style" are not always the same thing.

To avoid caricature, the geometry of the forms of the built house must be taken into account. The quality and quantity of decor, the logicality of its application are important.

To choose an individual outfit for the house is more important than blind imitation of any style.

— Mountains or the sea? Are you an active person?

— Both mountains and the sea! Why choose? Yes, I am an active person: skiing, snowboarding, kitesurfing, trekking and hiking, photography, knitting, embroidery, reading...

Interview by Alexey Vatavu

Practical issues of "The Secrets of Beautiful Facades"