Sandrine Héroux recently joined the ranks of the firm’s licensed architects. Sandrine received her Bachelor of Architecture, Master of Architecture and Master of Science in Architecture from École d’architecture de l’Université Laval in Québec city. Today we celebrate her accomplishments.
What is the best part of your job?
Payette is home to a variety of specialized groups that offer unrivalled career opportunities. Being on the fabrication team, I get to work on multiple projects and collaborate with different people from the office. Every week is unique, and my day-to-day work life is ever-changing. I feel privileged to work both in a shop and an office setting. This allows me to be involved in all steps of a project – from design through fabrication, to the final installation on site. There is a sense of fulfillment – and relief – when the pieces you drew and fabricated connect seamlessly together, blending in perfectly with the existing conditions.
What projects have you worked on and are currently working on?
The fabrication team’s work ranges from the architectural model scale to life-size mock-ups. We build room prototypes, custom furniture, interview models, ceiling panel iterations and more.
One of the earliest projects I worked on were façade components for the Ragon Institute. Multiple iterations spanning scales were fabricated to assist the team in their design process. Making these foam fins and then visiting the site to see the final product being installed was truly amazing.
I have also completed exhibition models of Payette’s projects. Of all the artifacts we build, the particular type of work requires the highest degree of precision and patience. Stay tuned for the upcoming one that is currently in the works!
Recently I recently coordinated and fabricated a structure for the AIA’s Women’s Leadership Summit Sho-Ping Chin: Legacy of Leadership exhibition. This effort would not have been possible without the hardworking team of women involved. There was a sense of camaraderie and accomplishment in the shop when all the pieces finally came together. The most rewarding part was seeing the reactions and the positive feedback from people whose work was displayed on the exhibition’s panels and Sho-Ping’s family.
What is the most important thing you have learned so far?
That you get to learn from everyone you work with: mentors, colleagues, students visiting for the semester, anybody can teach you- it is not a matter of experience of skillset. I have also come to fully recognize the importance of finding out what you excel at and learning how it can benefit others. Architecture is teamwork.
What is Your Favorite Thing About Living in Boston?
I love Boston. What makes it perfect for me is the combination of old and new, its walkability, the proximity of parks wherever you are and the fact that there are always new areas to explore. Back in school, my thesis explored complex concrete casting through digital fabrication and Boston has numerous well-known brutalist buildings. The first months I lived here, I felt as if I was walking in an architecture history book: the New England Aquarium, Boston’s City Hall and Paul Rudolph’s Government Center are all within walking distance. Even though I do not advocate for the construction of new concrete buildings, I believe the existing ones are a crucial part of Boston’s identity and should be preserved and, most of all, celebrated.
To Conclude, What Tool Do You Like Best In The Shop?
Half-truth, half inside joke – the most useful machine we have is our own personal shop coffee machine.