Interview: Melbourne Interior Directors of SJB

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    To put it simply, SJB is at the vanguard of shaping the places we live. In its entirety the firm encompasses architecture, interior design, planning and urban design – for a presence ever-felt in the design community. With offices in Sydney and Melbourne, the scope of SJB’s work is far-encompassing, host to a portfolio that spans across Australia, Asia and Europe. Near or far, you’re bound to have stumbled upon a building that’s got the SJB touch. On the interior front, SJB have an unrivalled ability to inject decadence in the day-to-day. Leading the Melbourne interior team are Directors Ljiljana Gazevic, Andrew Parr, Leo Terrando; a trio that knows luxurious design, inside out, and back to front.

    Together, the Melbourne Directors steer a team with their signature bold colour and black accents, alongside a mindfulness for adaptive reuse. They believe in adding and nuancing the layers of a building instead of starting completely from scratch. Previously, we looked inside Ljiljana’s seaside home and confirm the source of her creativity comes from a place curated with only the finest new art, furniture and accessories. Today we chat with SJB’s Interior Directors on imagination, preservation and what projects are on the horizon in 2018.

    PHOTOGRAPHY Nicole England & Lucas Allen 

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    As the Interior Directors of the SJB Melbourne team, how would you describe your working relations; how do you coordinate and collaborate? 

    Andrew Parr: All projects are discussed between the three of us, from initial enquiry through concept to completion. We have weekly design reviews of our projects to gain feedback and generate new ideas. We are all very hands-on with our projects.

    How do you interact with the architectural division of SJB – where does your work intersect or crossover?

    Ljiljana Gazevic: We interact with the SJB Architecture division for around 25% of our projects. We usually crossover on large-scale projects like multi-residential and hospitality (hotels). It is like working with any other consultant, we have regular workshops, design meetings and meetings with the client.

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    Collectively, what would you say is the ‘signature’ SJB design approach and how do you remain intuitive to a brief? 

    Leo Terrando: We don’t have a ‘signature’ design approach as such as each of our projects are extremely unique. All of our projects are very ‘luxe’ and we return a personalised brief to the client specific to their project.

    Where do you source ideas for your imaginative spaces?

    All: A range of different inspirations shape our ideas for our projects- travel, memories, design history, movements, art, fashion, international trends, nature- it really depends on the project. It’s a personal encyclopaedia.

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    How do you see your role in shaping Melbourne’s urban communities into the future and what do you prioritise in your inner-city development projects?

    Leo Terrando: Particularly in our hospitality and multi-residential projects, we aim to create local hangouts, places where people come together, people of different age groups and different backgrounds.

    How do you build sustainability into your practice?

    All: Adaptive re-use; like turning an old mechanic shop into a new development. Responsible selection of materials to choose the best for the project at hand. Choosing carefully the consultants we work with to ensure alignment in standards.

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    Finally, what do we have to look forward to from SJB Melbourne? 

    Ljiljana Gazevic: You will see a high level of residential projects soon, both multi-residential and single residential. We have quite a few near completion. Also, we have a few hospitality/ hotel jobs in Melbourne coming up.

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