Cosmas D. Gozali: Combining Business and Art

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The beauty of any building, be it a house, apartment or office, depends on the role and contribution of the architect. Young architect Cosmas D. Gozali has a special way in smartly designing the connection of spaces. He uses supporting materials not only as decoration, but more as part of a harmonious design. “Actually, I don’t design buildings, but more the relationship of spaces,” he explained.  

As the founder and director of Arya Cipta Graha, Cosmas possesses a profound know-how in architecture that expands from classic to contemporary style. However, he is also well known for his minimalist concepts. After returning from Austria in 1992, Cosmas, who graduated from Technische Universitats Wien, Vienna, was asked to design someone’s home and he recommended a minimalist design. “And the client loved it,” he said.  

After his first assignment he became well known for his minimalist designs, or simplicity, which was the trend at that time. But he was not satisfied, because architecture keeps on developing and an architect has to be able to predict which designs will be in demand in the near future.  

However, Cosmas is not merely an architect, because he is also an entrepreneur. That is why he left his comfortable position as a consultant in Austria and established his own company here. Initially he worked with a friend, but in 2005 he branched out on his own and established his own architecture company, Arya Cipta Graha, which is also known as Atelier Cosmas Gozali.  

Cosmas, who was born in Jakarta in 1966, had been interested in building designs since childhood. “I always paid attention to the designs of buildings in every city I visited,” he said. He was also good in drawing and in math. So, a career in architecture was fitting.  

To create beautiful and functional designs, Cosmas, who has 17 years’ experience in the business, combines his brilliant ideas with a client’s requirements. “An architect has to be able to blend artistic elements with comfort,” he said.  

He then went on to quote his company’s mission and vision statement. “Though the client program offers the architect a point of departure, it must be questioned, as the architectural solutions lie in the complex and often contradictory interpretation of the needs of the individuals, the institutions, the place and history,” His success lies not only in his expertise and brilliant creations, but his networking has also resulted in uncountable designs for homes, apartments, offices and hotels. His portfolio also includes interior and landscaping. Today, his creations can be seen in most architecture magazines, both foreign and domestic.  

However, Cosmas is more than an architect-entrepreneur. He is also an art lover. He has numerous paintings and statues that he has been collecting for 20 years. In 2004, he established a fine arts gallery in Singapore called Aryaseni.

“The gallery has a mission to promote art, especially Indonesian fine art. Singapore is the right place for the gallery as it is an international trade gateway and we have been collaborating with many foreign galleries,” said Cosmas, who worked for some time as the regional director of Larasati Muse Investment, an auction house specializing in Asian fine art, in Singapore from 2001 until 2005.  

Cosmas, who loves traveling, thinks that architecture and art are inseparable. “Both contain artistic and esthetic values to create innovative work,” said Cosmas, who is the husband of Grace Tabaluyan.   

Cosmas is currently preparing a green architecture concept for the home of the Swiss ambassador to Indonesia. Although Cosmas’ work is mostly creative, he applies a high degree of discipline in his office, which employs 16 people, 10 of whom are architects.

“During meetings or brainstorming we are freely creative – out of the box, so to speak – we also argue to the maximum. But once we agree on a concept, which gets the client’s approval, we start the work with a high degree of discipline that includes deadline without affecting the quality,” said Cosmas, who is father to two daughters aged 12 and 9.  

Cosmas frequently shares his expertise and knowledge with his employees. “It is high time to entrust them with orders from certain clients, although the finishing touches are still done by me so as not to lose the character of Atelier Cosmas Gozali. It is actually kind of teamwork,” said Cosmas, who won third prize for his design for a sports hall in Sunter, North Jakarta. (Burhan Abe)   

The Jakarta Post, October 21, 2009

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