How to get accepted in Studio Lynn/Rashid/Sejima ?

Chirag S. from India sent us a question which we would like to answer in our SYNAblog to also help others.

How to get accepted in Studio Lynn/Rashid/Sejima ?

Die Angewandte
The University of Applied Arts or informally just called Die Angewandte, is an institution of higher education in Vienna, the capital of Austria. The university exists as such since 1970. To my surprise when I came to Vienna in 2010, I realised not many people knew about this University. General public living in Vienna does not know about the great offer for architecture education that they have. People with an interest in Art have at least heard about it because it is mostly famous for artists like Gustav Klimt and Oskar Kokoschka.

Attractive personalities like Vivienne Westwood, Karl Lagerfeld, Hussein Chalayan, Stefan Sagmeister, Wolf D Prix of Coop Himmelb(l)au and Zaha Hadid have been involved over the years as staff or students.

Application Process
Today the architecture faculty has three studios. The former studio of Dame Zaha Hadid in which my partner and I studied during 5 years is now Studio Sejima Vienna with Professor Kazuyo Sejima from Saana. The second is Studio Lynn which is lead by Greg Lynn. A third one is the former studio of Wolf D Prix now Studio Rashid with Hani Rashid as Professor. With so many interesting names the school attracts students from all parts of the world. However the admission process can be confusing and there is one simple question that arises.
How can I enter the Angewandte? We hope we can give you some insider tips and answers to the question we get asked the most by sharing our experience .

Entry Exam
When we entered the university, there was a 3 days exam that had to be successfully passed, in order to enter the 5-years program. Nowadays the process is different, students must have already a minimum of a bachelor title to be able to apply for the 3 years Master’s degree. For the applications you only give  your portfolio and if you are chosen, you get invited to an interview which can be done via Skype. This is actually good news. People from all over the world, have now access an can apply without traveling to Vienna. One important note is that the Master program is quite new and it hasn’t been approved to be recognised completely internationally yet, so you should get in contact with the administration if this is something that will create problems when you take the title back to your home country. So what does your application consists of?

Portfolio
When you create a portfolio, you express your character, personality, how you work and how you think, therefore take care of the graphic design, as it is as important as your work. Show that you are able to organize and structure creative ideas. Think about what is the best layout to showcase your work. Be selective with your projects, don’t show every project and every drawing. Choose wisely what is interesting and if something can be improved, work on it. For instance, if you have many technical drawings, which is usually the case for people coming from technical bachelor’s, try to adjust them into a rather graphical drawing by adding shadows and diverse line thicknesses. Get rid of standard CAD hatches! Show less but take care of high quality. Keep it clean and don’t overcrowd it.

Prepare your portfolio knowing already to which studio you want to apply, then study their students work and get inspired by the website of the studio, you are planning to attend. All 3 studios are very different to each other, therefore, adapt your work and representation accordingly.

I hope that answer gave you a hint on how to apply. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to send them directly to us. Stay updated for more.

Rhina from SYNArchitecture