After studying at Edinburgh College of Art, and graduating from the Architectural Association in London, she followed postgraduate courses at the University of Tokyo.
Findlay firmly believes in architecture as continuous research. In her view, architecture’s success depends on the convergence of all the elements integrated within the work: external aspects, internal space, structure, environment and location. In her nearly twenty years of professional practice, she has been involved in a large variety of projects in Japan and the United Kingdom, from private homes to larger scale projects. Among her most recent or ongoing works are the National Museum of Costume, Al Koot Fort in Qatar; several private residences in Qatar, and several projects in British country houses.
Kathryn Findlay has developed a broad range of ideas which are reflected in her work and her projects, in competitions and exhibitions, and in the research she carries out at several educational institutions. The fields she has worked in most extensively include integration between technology and architecture (how technological progress influences design and the final project), respect for the environment (the environmental sustainability of works), vernacular art and architecture, and the special urban morphology of Japanese cities.
Kathryn Findlay’s intention was to recreate a place of meditation where guests could dream or, in her own words, listen to the breeze. The architect separated the spaces with white curtains to achieve a very feminine space.
The most curious aspect of the idea of this Scottish architect is that she decided to create an interactive space. Indeed, her work stands out for her interest in integrating technology with architecture, and how technological advances influence decisively in the design of a space.
To achieve this, she worked in collaboration with the lighting designer Jason Bruges. Findlay and Bruges determined that guests should play with the space, discover it by themselves and through this interactivity, discover something about themselves too. Fibre optic panels were designed for the lobby, which Bruges calls Memory Wall, which capture the guests’ movements only to later project a distorted image of them on the panels made with points of colour. In the hallways, shooting lighting accompanies guests to their rooms.
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