MovingCities published in the June-July 2013 issue of Mark magazine #44 an interview with Indonesian architect Adi Purnomo. In 2009, when we reported on a house and studio that he had designed for a photographer and art collector in Jakarta, we talked about architecture without air conditioning as part of a strategy tailored to the demands of a tropical climate (Green and Tidy, Mark 21, page 154).
It’s a strategy that still forms his point of departure, but today he has other concerns as well. For starters, he wants to accelerate his output. Read the full interview.
Adi Purnomo Interview | MARK magazine#44
An extract from Adi Purnomo Interview  :
So it’s no surprise to find Purnomo at the building site, engaged in intense conversation with a team of construction workers. ‘I enjoy improvising during construction,’ Purnomo says, more or less negating his assertion about keeping to a tight schedule. ‘When I see the spaces actually being created, I add extra touches here and there, like this extruded beam. I want this house to represent a dialogue between timber and glass: rough versus smooth. I like to experiment. I enjoy having the construction workers interpret my design. But not every contractor can work like this, and I’ve never done it before either. Building this house, I’ve come to realize that making decisions on site is a method of working we seem to have forgotten about.’
Purnomo’s choice of timber for the house is ulin, or ironwood, which withstands the conditions of a humid, tropical climate. Purnomo found the wood in Samarinda, a city in East Borneo, where it was part of an old pier on the Mahakam River. Following the demolition of the pier, the architect bid for the timber, which he recycled for use at Tanah Teduh. ‘In Indonesia, wood and bamboo are still the most commonly used materials because of the climate. It’s challenging to find ways to replace concrete with timber. I still see wood as an ideal renewable resource.’ Purnomo says that, with his design for this villa, he hopes to promote awareness of the disastrous deforestation of Indonesia – and to reach a wide audience with his message.
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Pictures by Mónica Carriço /movingcities.org