Then the 90s Came

architects Katarina Pirkmajer Dešman, Miha Dešman
interviewed by Nataša Koselj


Interviewed in Ljubljana, June 2002


ORIS: Thinking back to the time you were students at the Faculty of Architecture in Ljubljana, in the second half of the 1970s, what was the climate like there, and how did it affect the students? Was it positive? Who was your mentor for the diploma project?   


Pirkmajer Dešman: We did our diploma project under the official mentorship of Professor Edvard Ravnikar. However, at this time we hardly ever saw him. Janez Ko‘elj and Peter Gabrijel~i~ were assistant lecturers then and they in fact acted as mentors for our diploma project.  


Dešman: Ours was one of the first diplomas under Janez Ko‘elj’s informal mentorship. Our topic was quite interesting; it dealt with the coast between Piran and Lucija. The topic emerged as a result of an international workshop, a forerunner of modern-day town planning workshops, where the two of us were part of a Ljubljana group headed by Professor Ravnikar. We developed the topic both in general and as a set of individual segments. It was the first time Ravnikar came to the practice sessions and said anything. We were working on a sort of connection between town planning and architecture. That was in the air at this time, and in the 80s it was advocated by Janez Koželj in his course called Architecture of the City. Our work relied on the Italian school of architecture championed by Ernest Rogers and Aldo Rossi… this school promoted  architecture of the city, rationalism and contextualism.