“Curiosity with all the digital tools is what makes me who I am,” says Architect and Visual Artist, Chantal Matar. “In my architecture training in Beiruit, we had to sketch by hand for the first three years. We weren’t even allowed to use any software. So I’m relatively new to these tools, even though I have all the graphics knowledge and the classical foundation. My software explorations are still quite innocent and that’s what makes me unique.” With influences as wide-ranging as sci-fi, biology, music and film, Chantal is now working with both traditional and non-traditional software tools in her avant garde and minimalist design expressions through her role as Senior Architect at Zaha Hadid Architects in London.
“We used to spend so much time on sketching one design option and now we can show hundreds of iterations in no time at all. I can’t even remember the last time I used a pen. But, now designers have to be especially careful not to get lost in a loop with so many ideas that we want to express. I’ve always been attracted to minimalist design aesthetics in architecture, photography and visual expressions of any medium. I think the less you show; the more you filter out, the more you can focus in on something specific.”
This focus on simplicity and natural design is at the core of Chantal’s work. “In a world with so many options, you get to be different and honest and express what you really feel and think about something. I make my designs very clear and delicate so you can tell what you’re seeing but it also makes you question why you are only seeing this one thing.”