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"As a designer I hope to be able to honor and inspire more people," says Gabriela Rocha

Gabriela Rocha is a Top Design in the Architecture Illustration Competition.

My name is Gabriela, but I am known to everyone as Gabs. I was born in São Paulo, Brazil, where I’ve lived all my life. I graduated as an architect and urban planner recently, at Anhembi Morumbi Laureate International Universities, through ProUni, a full scholarship program. I’ve lived in several neighborhoods in this great city and for the past few years I've been living in a rural area, somewhat remote, in which sometimes it makes me feel out of society, watching it, perceiving it.

As a designer I hope to be able to honor and inspire more people. More architects, more women. Arousing and stimulating curiosity about the works done by women. And especially, to learn and develop more and more a conscious, collaborative, equitable and inclusive design, so then, in this way, to intervene in spaces, as an architect and urban planner.

My illustrations emerged from a process of reflection. Trying to find works by other female architects, to encourage me as an architect, so that way I could create a sense of belonging and believing in myself. I made drawings with several different techniques, it was just an absorption process, I need to draw to memorize. Until I made the first collage. I had never done it before and I really enjoyed how it looked, it has a certain abstraction and a dreamlike aspect that I appreciate. And so I continued making collages as a way to absorb the whole work and its architect. I published them little by little on my Instagram and then a complete version with a descriptive text on the website Base Colab owned by Leonardo Dias. He participated in the Coronavirus Design Competition and was the one who told me about the Architecture Illustration Competition and encouraged me to participate. I had never seen an illustration contest before and I totally embraced the idea after getting to know the Design Class platform, a great platform for young designers, artists and architects. And, therefore, seeing this as an outstanding opportunity to inspire and sharing the idea of female representativeness in architecture.

My illustrations speak as much about my personal experience as about the culture around me, my experience in relation to the culture around me. That's where the story is, where the story begins.  I wanted to identify myself, to feel represented, to mirror myself and be inspired by other female professionals. Because it is very usual to perceive the civil construction field as an area dominated by men, while women are left with the interior architecture, the decoration, which is also cool, but it is not only that. The opportunities are different. So, I ventured to find great female architects and their great works, to encourage me to do the same, with confidence.

In architecture it is very fond of saying how fascinating it is and how much we are in love with it. It is passionate, yes, but it is also very challenging. On a daily basis it is an arduous process, many variables to consider at the same time, to learn, understand, apply, in short. I would like everyone to be in their profession for love and purpose (but I understand that not everyone can). Love is not enough without commitment, because that way it can become selfish. The purpose I understand as a possibility of contributing.

Do everything you can with love, but also with purpose. The journey is always challenging, but if you do it with love and purpose your architecture can make any dream come true.

Oh, and of course, if you want to introduce me any female architect and her work with me, I’d love it! Just send me over here.

My Instagram: @gabshiro

Gabriela RochaGabriela RochaGabriela RochaGabriela Rocha
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