Amir Banihashem is a Master of Architecture candidate at the BAC. He was born and raised in Paris, France and moved to the US to attend Northwestern University. There, he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in both Radio/TV/Film and Economics.
Prior to attending the BAC, Amir worked in construction management. While working on projects, he found himself reacting to the placement of elements and realized that his interest lied with the design of the space rather than with its construction or scheduling aspects. This experience encouraged him to pursue architecture, as well as distance himself from current construction conventions to imagine greater possibilities.
Amir's undergraduate studies have influenced his design approach as well. His interest is in creating intelligent environments through interdisciplinary collaboration to improve human life. He is also interested in designing responsive architecture and buildings that are manufactured onsite using digital fabrication and built by robots. "In film, you work with motion and light, which is very similar to how a person experiences architecture. I think my studies in film have influenced my ideas of how architecture should be presented. I would like to present my projects as videos or as a total immersion into the design. In film, you can design any environment without worrying about structure or if it is buildable. I have taken this mindset into my designs, as I believe technology is catching up to bridge the gap. Architecture has a certain silence, whereas film is animated and full of sounds, and I am interested in creating a more lively architecture, one that interacts, senses, and then effectively changes human behavior. Computer graphics are about creating virtual environments and film is about telling stories. I see architecture as creating real environments where you can witness stories."
While at the BAC, Amir has thoroughly enjoyed BAC Gateway Projects. He has learned about bioregionalism while working collaboratively on the Haiti Ideas Challenge Competition. Through the Boys and Girls Club of South Boston project, he was able to participate in establishing programmatic needs. Amir feels that involvement in actual projects is rewarding and invaluable. In the academic setting, Amir credits his BAC foundation studio instructors with being a large influence in helping to develop his thought processes as a designer.
Amir currently serves as Tresurer of Atelier. In his spare time, he loves finding exciting software and emerging technologies, tinkers around in Rhino, plays tennis and soccer, and enjoys fine beers and food.