We met Manuel on the second floor of his office in Principe Real, working late in the evening together with his colleague José Maria. The long pine wood tables running through the entirety of the generous room are flanked by shelves with personal objects on one side and large windows opening to Rua Cecílio de Sousa on the other. Books already lined the shelves in the antechamber of his office and continued to be piled up all around the room. We had a chance to talk to Manuel about Europe’s architectural history, the importance of the resistance of buildings, the significance of regional influence and what to pass on to the next generation of pioneers.
Manuel Aires Mateus founded Aires Mateus Arquitectos together with his brother Francisco in Lisbon, Portugal. The offices are composed of about forty people, working together on regional and international projects. The brothers not only work together but also teach at Universidade Autónoma in Lisbon and Accademia di Architettura Mendrisio, Switzerland.