SHAU was established in 2009 by Florian Heinzelmann, Daliana Suryawinata and Tobias Hofmann with offices in Bandung (Indonesia) and Rotterdam (Netherlands) run by Florian and Daliana, and Passau (Germany) run by Tobias. SHAU is a research-driven practice that focuses on public and private projects that impact on the city. Its designs are about a clear urban story, a high level of community interaction, and material and energy performance. More than focusing on a specific style or formal language, SHAU asks: How can we maximise the building’s contribution to the city? How can users experience space differently? What innovative energy-efficient solution can we make?

The aim is for each design to (re)brand the neighbourhood, the city and the region in a new and positive way. SHAU prefers to take an active role rather than a passive one. By active, they mean to create new niches, not to conform to available markets but create new propositions with or without the market. Together with their clients and collaborators, they aim to create innovative, socially and environmentally responsible projects with outstanding design.

SHAU also seeks an alternative relationship between architect and client. Whenever possible, the studio steps out of its role as a consultant and stands up as project initiator, fundraiser and design-brief maker. For younger generation of architects and designers, SHAU shows the possibility of dynamic architecture practice in a time where there is the (mis)understanding that post-design school career paths are limited to working for the government, working for the private sector, becoming an academic, or changing industry.

Photography and images: SHAU, Sanrok Studio, Sonny Sandjaya, Dudi Sugandi, Maulana Hafez.