Recently, I got invited to submit an article to “Ehituskunst” – an annual bilingual Estonian magazine, investigating architecture and theory. The topic, this time, was materiality. If you are interested, you can see a short abstract and download the PDF of the article below.

“What is architecture’s stance on materiality in the context of our modern digitized world? Featuring both personal reflections of the author and a general philosophical discussion, “Embracing materiality” takes a conservative approach, calling materiality the lifeblood of the profession of architecture, and arguing that it is capable of serving as an idea for architecture in the world obsessed with ephemeral concepts. The article is published in both Estonian and English.”

Sergejev, I. (2015). “Embracing Materiality”. Ehituskunst, #57. pp 30-37


Hello everyone,

When a year and a half ago I published a blog post on my experience at OMA on my blog, I wrote a personal reflection on my experience which I thought might be interesting for people “out there” to read. Later, as I submitted the post for publication with, I could have never imagined the backlash it would have resulted in. With this post, I want to publicly apologize for the hurt feelings it has generated. I did not intend for this to happen.

I agree, my post has featured strong (offensive) language, and I apologize for using it – especially in the context of a “joke”. I will rework the article in order to respect the hurt feelings of so many people who reacted to it. My use of the word “rape” was metaphorical and only there to effectively bring across my point: that working at one of the leading offices for architecture is not easy, and certain things (absence of time for oneself outside work, specifically) need to be accepted without much control on one’s behalf. It was not intended as support of male supremacy or anything of sort. Now, though, I understand that the use of such “metaphors” is inappropriate. I apologize for that.

In addition, I do have to clarify two things.

First: my blog post was meant as a reflection. It can not be taken for fact, and is a personal interpretation of my experience.

Second: the original title of my blog post was “What I’ve learned at OMA”. The “20 Tips for Being a Successful Architect” was later added to the article by Arch2O without my consent, and has thus skewed the intent of the post. As I said above, the post was written as a reflection – not advice, warning, etc.

Again, I apologize the post generated such a backlash. Apart from what I said wrong, I hope that readers will be able to see and appreciate what I said right. I am grateful to the blogs like The Funambulist for looking beyond point nr. 8 and using my post for trying to analyze the broader condition of the profession of architecture as a whole.


I am sorry.

Ivan Sergejev