atelier V is a mechanism to initiate a collaborative effort in making visual and spatial connections between a building and its context, and to pursue ideas which attempt to establish a dialogue between the idealized and the idiosyncratic characteristics in each problem.
We intend to find means of making buildings communicate in the language of form, materials and texture. Architecture in our view is an art of substance, of materialized ideas about space, responding to the demands of the programme, site, locale, building technology and social responsibility.
We make explicit connections to a world perceived in our view to be pluralistic and heterogeneous. It is this pluralistic view that makes history such an integral part of our process of place making. We respect the history of architecture, not in order to evoke an association with past forms and motifs, but to better be able to formulate relevant, responsible, imaginative ideas about architecture.
We believe in harmony of parts, a rational procedure, a concern for quality of proportion, a precision of detail, constructional integrity, programmatic appropriateness and human scale. We seek to pursue the plastic limits of modern architecture outside of its traditional boundaries.
We do not conceive of reality as a loose compound of incoherent fragments, nor consider all systematic thought to be irrelevant. In fact, emerging through our noise is an ever present concern for order. We believe in the use of technology as a tool, not an end in itself, but one means by which architectural ideas may be expressed with vigor and coherence.
Our work then, is an attempt to define and redefine the meaning of order, to understand a relationship between what has been and what can be; to extract from culture both the timeless and the topical, to be informed by the city and aspire to redefine it.
I our view, architecture at its best is an integration of human scale with civic grandeur, decorative simplicity with material richness, an interest in technical innovation with respect for historical precedent.
This to us is the basis of style: the decision to include or exclude, the final exercise of individual as well as collective will and intellect. Fundamentally then, our meditations are on plural effects of space, form and light, on context, history and society and vice versa. We do not always succeed! However, we pursue it with unrelenting vigor and believe that it is the heart and soul of architecture.
Mark Vaghei is a Design Principal and the founder of the firm. He is a graduate of Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) in Architecture. He also holds Masters degrees in Architecture and Civil Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign and has attended the Special Program for Urban and Regional Studies at MIT. Mark is a California and Nevada Licensed Architect and a member of NCARB.
Mark Vaghei's work has received recognition both nationally and internationally. He is the recipient of AIA Honor Awards for his work on the Word of Faith Family Complex in Lake forest, California, the interiors of The VEE Collaborative offices in Irvine, California and The Hills retail complex in Bedminister, New Jersey. Mark's work has appeared in the Progressive Architecture Magazine and many other publications. Additionally, Mark has been a successful entrant in a number of national and international competitions including The Blacksburg Public Library in Blacksburg, Virginia; The Leesburg Town Hall in Leesburg, Virginia; The Hermosa Beach Pier Design Competition in Hermosa Beach, California; The University of Cypress Master Plan in Nicosia, Cypress; The Pacific Center for Media Arts in Honolulu, Hawaii; and the TB Insurance Headquarters in Shanghai, Peoples Republic of China. Mark's competition entry in the Blacksburg Public Library received national attention and was included as part of a travelling exhibition on Civic Architecture.
Mark Vaghei assumes the design lead on all of the firm's projects. With over 25 years of international experience on multiple building types, a wide multicultural experiential base is brought to his projects. He has led a wide variety of complex master planning and design projects comprised of teams of architects, engineers, marketing analysts, and specialized consultants throughout the full range of project issues.
Mark Vaghei has served as visiting design faculty at the University of Southern California School of Architecture and was the past President of Society of Iranian Architects and Planners (SIAP.org). Mr. Vaghei has been interviewed by the Voice of America International Persian Language Radio and Los Angeles radio station KIRN on the topics related to the current issues in Architecture.