Dana Cupkova can’t pinpoint the exact moment she knew she wanted to be an architect, but instead describes ‘falling into it, because it was the only thing that made sense’.
“My father might have had a different interpretation though,” concedes the founding director and design principal of EPIPHYTE Lab. “Apparently he knew I was destined for it when I was five years old.”
The daughter of an engineer and a microbiologist, Dana’s interdisciplinary trajectory has tracings of her early life.
EPIPHYTE Lab is a collaborative design and research practice that operates between art and science. It engages the built environment at the intersection of perception, aesthetics and ecology. Named after a non-parasitic plant that feeds off of biological waste, its mission lies in the design of architectures that operate like epiphytes; informed by coupling thermodynamic behavior with geometry, using computationally-driven and material-conscious processes.
“I used to go to my mother’s lab and watch her microbial cultures grow. In a lot of ways, EPIPHYTE operates more like a lab for design experiments,” Dana muses.