Student profile: Daniela Kresnadi

Figure 1: Daniela Kresnadi at the 2016 NGV Architecture Commission M@STUDIO ARCHITECTS

Daniela Kresnadi will be graduating from MADA with a Masters in Architecture at the end of 2019. She has taken a year break between the Bachelors and Masters working at an architectural firm Spaces Design Group for practical experience.

Name: Daniela Kresnadi
Preferred Name: Dani
Place of birth: Medan, Indonesia
Education: Monash University – Bachelors & Master of Architectural Design

Favourite architecture quote: ‘Engrave ideas onto naked walls and build in fantasy without regard for technical difficulties. To have the gift of imagination is more important than all technology, which always adapts itself to man’s creative will.’ – Walter Gropius, ‘Arbeitsratfur Kunst Berlin’, 1919

Favourite building at Monash: The Caulfield Library is not only a great place to study, but a great source of knowledge and inspiration.

Favourite architectural experience: I enjoyed going to Poland to do a summer intensive studio. I would recommend to anyone who has the opportunity, do a travelling studio at least once in your university career.

Favourite book/magazine/movie: The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.

Figure 2: CROP CITY – A section view of Daniela’s vision for a civilisation on Mars where crops dictate culture.

Tips, tricks & lessons learned

Biggest architectural influence: CJ Lim because for his uninhibited imagination and  his ability to tell stories through design. His works function in the space between reality and fantasy, which is where I draw most inspiration from.

Favourite assignment: I did a printmaking elective where the outcome was to produce a book of your choice. It was so interesting to go through the process of rolling the ink, prepping the paper, figuring out the printing press pressures- all the things you don’t have to think about in our digital age where you can type words out and print in a matter of seconds.

Most helpful architectural lesson ever been taught: The Professional Practise unit was really good in giving us a crash course on what to expect in practise. The unit helped encourage us to think about our position as architects and what kind of impact we want to make within industry which I think is an important step to take before entering practise.

Most useful computer program for design studio: Rhino, Photoshop and Illustrator.

Best trick to learn early at MADA: If you’re not good at renders, make architectural collages!

Most useful drawing type for design assignments: Collages, because you can visualise your ideas and concepts quickly and simply through this method- it always ends up being very atmospheric and graphic which is a plus.

Hand drawing or computer modelling: I always start with a sketch to plan out my ideas, but then I generate everything on the computer to make it presentable - you can always play with effects to make your computer outcomes look hand drawn.

Favourite architecture theory or style: I’m really interested in anything that attempts to incorporate vernacular architecture into a contemporary context. It speaks more to me than other styles because it reflects the site, culture and local knowledge in a very tangible way. It prioritises culture and craftsmanship in an age of rapid industrialisation where these things are more than often overlooked.

What products do you use most on architecture work: I use photoshop and illustrator heavily, even for technical drawings. I always post process my renders/drawings in these programs to clean it up and make it look more presentable.

Favourite year of study at MADA: I’ve enjoyed my fifth year the most, at this point I have a clearer understanding of what I want to achieve/say with my outcomes in university and fifth year is great because the structure of deliverables offers free reign for us to pursue/inject our personal endeavours into the unit.

What type of building would you love to design the most: I would love to be involved in the design of post-disaster recovery project and also maybe a church.

Do you prefer details or overall form: The devil is in the details.

Preferred methods for stress management: It’s so easy to neglect self-care during crunch times at university- pausing and taking time out to let your project + brain breathe is so important, often my best ideas come to me during my breaks.  Going to the gym is always a sure way to make myself feel better.

Find out more

Daniela is currently in the studio Map of Doom in her final semester of studies. She hopes to work in disaster recovery architectural design in future to provide humanitarian aid in times of need. More of Daniela’s work can be found at the “MADA End of Year Exhibition” for 2019.