(design.inspiration) matthew chan

If you're in the midst of renovations or one day would like to build your dream home then I suggest you take a look at the website of architect Matthew Chan. He creates real homes that are sophisticated yet livable. The Mountain Villa - I'm there! (Okay, maybe that one's not so real.) And as a recovering perfectionist, what Matthew says here has real resonance for me: "Make every project your best project as you are always judged by your lowest mark."

Which five words best describe you? Determined, adaptable, optimistic, competitive, quirky.
What was your first job and what path have you taken since then? I worked in a merchant bank as a courier at age 15, but I decided quite early on that instead of finance I should pursue a more creative profession - I ended up studying architecture at uni + haven't looked back since.
What’s your proudest achievement? We just won a commission for an installation to be exhibited in the Sydney Laneways By George project to be held over the summer, which I am pretty proud of. Otherwise finishing my masters degree in the Netherlands was quite an achievement for me.
What’s been your best decision? Starting my own design studio - having the Independence to call my own shots is more valuable than anything to me.
Who inspires you? My crazy parents who are completing advanced degrees when most people are well retired and winding down; maybe Miguel Indurain, a Spanish cyclist who won the Tour de France 5 times in the early 90s.
What are you passionate about? I love the outdoors + spend all of my spare time thinking of how I can escape the city + get out into the mountains, ocean or bush. I'm also into cool bicycles and have quite the collection. I love my food and am definitely led by my appetite. Of course, I am passionate about my work first and foremost, but its the other things which make life a bit more colorful and feed my energy.
What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt? 1. you have to begin as you would like to finish. 2. make every project your best project as you are always judged by your lowest mark. Question everything + take nothing for granted + maybe learning to ride a bike as a kid.
Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Ghengis Khan.
What dream do you still want to fulfil? Building my next masterpiece and then the one after that. Riding across the Pyrenees, traversing the silk road by bicycle.
What are you reading? The plague of fantasies by Slavoj Zizek, a philosopher from Slovenia, I learnt of from the recent architectural conference.

Images courtesy of Matthew Chan