Oreste Drapaca Architect

The Practice
Oreste Drapaca


"Beauty is the promise of happiness."

Architecture is defined as the art and/or science of designing buildings. As art, it has to do with our aspirations; as science, it has to find a practical way to build an environment for those aspirations.

A project, then, is the manifestation in design form of a person’s or group’s physical and spiritual aspirations, and is, therefore, a cultural act. It reveals the society’s self-image, how it sees itself in relation to the cosmos, and its very concept of the cosmos. 

When practicing, the designer is aware of the responsibility of rendering such cultural preoccupations by imparting to each design a uniqueness related to the project’s user(s), and a generality related to the concept of that user belonging to a larger group--or to humanity itself. Each detail, then, is conceived with such a dual requirement: that it speaks for one person, and it explains that                       



person’s place in the world.

The quality of a project is less related to the size of the budget and more to the sustained focus of the parties involved (architect, owner, builder) and how appropriately the resources are used.

In this era of specialization, the architect is unique in being a Renaissance craftsman: no specialist of any field, but a leader of many, not unlike the orchestra conductor. Architecture, one of the older crafts, is also unique in that most of its original rules are still applicable today. This is not by accident, since architecture’s preoccupation is human activity, both physical and spiritual.

Therefore, there will always be a roof, four walls, a chair, a window, the light toward which we always turn, and the shadow which reveals the space.