Vello Asi Student Prize 2023
Albert Kerstna

Sven is one of the diligent interior architecture students whose studies were never about simply completing the lesson plan and showing up at lectures. Sven was able to develop a chain of active communication and events that turn the process of teaching and learning into an interesting dialogue.

It is in Sven’s nature to use his professional skills and creative means to seek out ways of creating added spatial value – a source of positive surprises for his fellow students, faculty members and Sven himself.

Development and creation processes practiced in the course of studio projects are clearly expressed in Sven’s series of mock-ups, technically meticulous and sensitively articulated self-expression, analysis-based conclusions and the end result. It’s always fascinating for teachers to track this process and development.

Jüri Kermik
Professor, Estonian Academy of Arts Department of Interior Architecture


For decades, legendary interior architect Vello Asi was instrumental in educating interior architecture students and guiding them to maturity and professionalism in their field. His principles and ethics along with attitudes towards work and art are values we hope to see in today’s young interior architects. The student prize bears Asi’s name for that reason. The Vello Asi student prize is not decided by the jury; instead, it is awarded by the Association of Interior Architects and the Estonian Academy of Arts.

In the course of my studies, I was fascinated by changing spaces that bend to people’s needs. I have tried to create open floor plans and modular furniture solutions that would allow users to curate their own space. The way the projects relate to the surrounding environment is also important. In designing a sauna, I added rainfall as a spatial element, a new way of experiencing rain as a natural phenomenon. Lately, I have educated myself in geology to more thoroughly understand the physical properties, components and origin of construction materials. In this manner, I hope to attain a more mature view of the surrounding world in order to apply it in my practice. I believe that architecture has a philosophical dimension and I want to have a clearer understanding of this. I have focused on clay construction, since I see it as having a rare aesthetic quality and the potential to create more sustainable construction methods and better living environments.

Sven Samyn