AHMAD JUFRI, 30, ARCHITECT
With a Colgate ad-worthy smile, architect Ahmad Jufri is all about a girl’s eyes and personality. Growing up the youngest boy of a big family family has certainly toughened him up for the world. In his spare time he enjoys playing tennis and golf – you’ll be catching a hole in one with Jufri!
Describe your personal architectural style.
Minimal, clean, organised and simple. Mies van der Rohe’s quote “Less is more” succinctly defines the modernist ethic and Tadoa Ando, who designed the Church of Light in Osaka, inspired me with the way he uses raw materials and his sensitive treatment of nature, and natural light.
What’s a building you’d like to design?
I’d like to design museums or performance theatres into old, abandoned buildings. I love buildings with a strong sense of history and identity, like the KLPAC in Sentul.
Striped shirt, H&M; jeans, Levi’s.
As a young architect, how do you wish to enhance the skylines of Kuala Lumpur?
Pre-War colonial buildings matter in the fabric of KL cities landscapes. We should protect and conserve!
Is there a cause you really care about?
Conserving and protecting the cultural as well as architectural significance of pre-war shops houses in Kuala Lumpur, Melaka and Penang. The lack of awareness or action meant these buildings are often neglected or dismantled, and I believe conserving them is another way of protecting Malaysia’s culture and identity.
Every time my mom tells me this story, I burst out laughing: When I was little, I had the tendency to pull down scarves of random aunties’ because I was curious. Well, they say “curiosity kills the cat”, but I think I turned out fine after my mom’s strict teachings.
– On Jufri’s favourite childhood memory.
What do you believe makes a successful life?
Being fully yourself, knowing what you stand for, having the courage to sketch your timeline with your own expectations all the while not caring what people say about you.