Chief Architect of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia).
Irina Alekseeva is Chief Architect of Yakutia, the largest and the coldest region of the world where facilities are designed and constructed under extreme climatic conditions.
She was born in Yakutia, graduated the Novosibirsk Architectural Institute, defended her PhD thesis on Architectural and Planning Evolution of Yakutsk. With many years of experience in field of urban planning behind her, she was one of pioneers of turning to GIS technologies and implementation of information systems in field of urban development on the territory of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). She actively initiates creative collaborations and communication projects in field of urban environment transformation. In 2008, Irina Alekseeva served as one of inspirational figures of the 'azART' Project aimed at interpretation of various forms of artistic self expression, such as architecture, fine arts and design, with means of contemporary art. During five years the project was held in different formats: in 2009, bridge piles — a landmark feature of the Northern architecture and a particular mark of Yakutsk — were chosen as art objects of the Zero Cycle Performance; in 2010, the theme of the Lightarium Show held in the building under construction with unfinished concrete walls in the background and accompanied but live music was a trick of the light and tricks with light; year 2011 was marked with experience in mixing modern music, dance, painting and architecture; and, finally, in 2012 the project was fully integrated into the urban space as an ecological performance, when city litter bins were painted as art objects in plain view of residents of the city. The next year similar, but larger cultural projects aimed at changing the urban environment fortified their positions in the framework of the BY – Yakutia Biennale of Contemporary Art held by the National Art Museum. A visit to the Moscow Urban Forum in 2013 drove studying of modern trends in field of architecture and urban planning, application of relevant tools for improvement of the urban environment and promotion of contest activities in the region. At the initiative of Irina Alekseeva issues of creating public spaces were raised and discussed in Yakutsk, open debates and workshops with participation of the Russian and international experts were held. Thus, in 2014, the First Crowd School was visited by Aleksei Muratov, partner of the Strelka KB, followed by the city contest for beautification of the Taloye Lake. The II School of Applied Urban Planning with the Russian urbanist Svyatoslav Murunov was focused on protection of cultural heritage sites and introduction of principles of universal design. Contest activities of Yakutsk were noticed by Moscow to be presented at the Moscow Biennale Architecture in the framework of ARCH MOSCOW 2014 as part of Elena Gonzalez's curator project 'A Contest as a Research'. After Irina Alekseeva had been appointed Chief Architect of Yakutsk in 2015, she promoted issues of complex development of territories, the use of contest activities as a tool for thorough elaboration of key urban development projects at first on the municipal level, and since 2019 – on the state one as a Chief Architect of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). She also supported interesting multidisciplinary projects, introduced methodology of joint planning and involvement of residents into shaping the comfortable urban environment. Following the results of the international workshop 'Public Spaces in Extreme Climates' held in 2016 in cooperation with the Moscow Architectural School, the 'Utchitelya Boulevard' project for beautification of public space was developed. At the start in 2017 the initiative made it to TOP 10 best projects of the 'Forming Comfortable Urban Environment' priority project, and following the results of 2018, it ranked as one of 100 best implemented projects in Russia. In 2019, she initiated foundation of the Competence Centre for Urban Environment; she considered training of architectural staff of Yakutia and improvement of their skills one of the major objectives of the Office for Architecture and Urban Development under the Head of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). Over eight months of work the Competence Centre has developed nine projects for the all-Russian contest 'Small Towns and Historical Settlements'; two of them have won, and two have made it to the final. The Centre has held three significant competitions of various scales: the Future Generations Park, Development of the Tourist Cluster in Oimyakon and the Concept of Development of the Lenin Square in Yakutsk participated by leading Russian and international architectural companies in consortium with Yakutsk architects. The project by Atrium Architectural Workshop (Moscow) and Vostok+ (Yakutsk) that won the Future Generations Park Contest made it to the WAF award short list. Aisen Nikolaev, Head of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), personally was a Chairman of the judges at every competition, while Irina Alekseeva was a Deputy Chairperson.
10:30 — 12:00