Nowadays Office is a team of 23 — including partners Nata Tatunashvili and Natalia Mastalerzh — that work on both small and large-scale projects, from furniture to museums of international significance, and interiors to urban strategies. The bureau has won various competitions, invented their own methods of visual representation and sought inspiration from the restrictions which context can impose. The creative process at Nowadays Office is driven by the aspiration to find the unique visual language, to explore the decorative qualities of mundane materials and to become better at what the architects do every single day.
Nowadays offers its own interpretation of the famous ‘Less is More’ motto, insisting that the realm of architecture, along with others, should not multiply entities beyond necessity. This means that local climate, materials, culture and traditions offer the best possible guidance, cancelling out the potential need to implant elements and concepts that feel foreign and redundant.
The architects' creative mission can be described in terms of the vernacular: Nowadays team strives to see beauty beyond the narrow notion of contemporary architectural aesthetics as represented in mainstream architectural media. Nowadays is ready and eager to work with any kind of local material and include all the elements of the locality in the design process instead of paying selective attention only to those that would contribute towards the most expressive architectural gesture.
The bureau sees the landscape (including the cultural one) and local history as active participants in the design process, taking care not to merely follow the trends but trying to reproduce or copy what belongs to history. This objective requires the invention and establishment of a new language that corresponds to the values of the place they are building in.
In its work, Nowadays appeals to an elusive spirit of place, whose ephemeral qualities can be embodied in a summation of all that makes a place distinct. For Moscow, that would be, well, ‘Moscowness’: a term Nowadays coined in 2013 and are still exploring through its design and research activities. In 2018/2019 the architects ran a workshop at the Moscow Architecture School (MARCH). ‘Moscow oddities’ — a research project that was born out of collaboration with 13 master’s students — is now being transformed into a book in which Nowadays gently peels back the layers of historical narratives and architectural artifacts comprising the city’s main thoroughfare, Moscow Garden Ring.