The exhibition and publication, “A man of thought” shows Bastin personal style, as a thinker and as an architect, as a maître architect. The exhibition includes a selection of critical projects, architectural material and dialogues with some external critics. It takes us to BMA staff working atmosphere.
In November 2009, Brussels government designated Olivier Bastin, for the first time in history, as Maître Architect (BMA), for a term of five years. The main mission of this institution, the government said, is to assist public clients in order to ensure architectural and landscape quality of the regional public projects.
The BMA disposed of six months to draft a guideline, to be aware of the current situation in that momento, to know its partners and the methods of working. Based on this guideline, the Government approved the authority of the BMA on 21 October 2010. In this letter of assignments, the Government extended the mission of the BMA to projects directed by the municipalities and the private sector, as they have a significant impact on public space.
The BMA, as exposed in their webpage, decided to focus on the architect designation phase because it is particularly crucial for the future of the project. In this context, the BMA has identified three levers: a good program – a good procedure – a good advisory committee.
A good program: To guide the public clients in the composition of their program, the BMA provides them with a document helping them identify project issues, constraints and ways to solve to get there.
A good procedure: BMA offers public clients a procedural model for helping to draft the contract and legal documents. It also gives advice on specifications relating to the designation of the author of the project.
A good advisory committee: The BMA works on setting up an advisory committee for designing phase and building phase. On request of the client, it can assume the leadership of that committee.
A good process is a guarantee for quality, but here are other factors involved. We must leave some room for chance. We need to keep an open mind, be able to react to the unexpected, the odd nice surprise. — Olivier Bastin BMA 18.06.2014 Brussels
The Government has instructed the BMA to work primarily on urban, architectural and landscape projects that the client is the regional administration.
Architect and scenographer since 1989 under the name: L’Escaut Architectures (www.escaut.org), a place where artists and architects share and exchange practices in a social and cultural vision, he has worked on several important architecture and landscape realisations. Some of them have received national and international recognitions and prices. From end 2009 he was the “Bouwmeester – Maître architecte / bMa” (Head architects / www.bmabru.be) of Brussels Capital Region, a mission of help to public and private contracting authorities in the processes of organizing good competitions for architecture and landscape projects as a guarantee for better quality in the design and carrying processes of these projects. Acupuncture urbanism was the vision for an action oriented toward the revitalization of the inner city life and its physical context. Teacher on architecture studios since 1994 (University ULB La Cambre Horta) Member and president of international juries for national and European competitions. He is one of the members of the BigMat International Architecture Award 2015.